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Environmental degradation as engine of undesirable economic growth via self-protection consumption choices

  • Antoci, Angelo

We analyze growth dynamics in an economy where the well-being of economic agents depends on three goods: leisure, a free access environmental good and a private good that can be consumed as a substitute for the environmental resource. The processes of production and consumption of the private good by each agent impose negative externalities on other agents through the depletion of the environmental good. This paper shows that, in such context, the existence of private substitutes for environmental goods may fuel an undesirable economic growth process. This process is driven by the continuous increase in agents' needs for private consumption generated by the progressive reduction in free consumption of the environmental good.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Ecological Economics.

Volume (Year): 68 (2009)
Issue (Month): 5 (March)
Pages: 1385-1397

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:68:y:2009:i:5:p:1385-1397
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ecolecon

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  1. Matsuyama, Kiminori, 1992. "Agricultural productivity, comparative advantage, and economic growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 317-334, December.
  2. Antoci, Angelo & Sacco, Pier Luigi & Vanin, Paolo, 2004. "Social capital accumulation and the evolution of social partecipation," AICCON Working Papers 5-2004, Associazione Italiana per la Cultura della Cooperazione e del Non Profit.
  3. Auty, Richard M., 2001. "The political economy of resource-driven growth," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 839-846, May.
  4. Hodler, Roland, 2006. "The curse of natural resources in fractionalized countries," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1367-1386, August.
  5. Shibata, Hirofumi & Winrich, J Steven, 1983. "Control of Pollution when the Offended Defend Themselves," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 50(200), pages 425-37, November.
  6. Sachs, Jeffrey D. & Warner, Andrew M., 2001. "The curse of natural resources," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 827-838, May.
  7. Gylfason, Thorvaldur, 2001. "Natural resources, education, and economic development," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(4-6), pages 847-859, May.
  8. Angelo Antoci & Simone Borghesi & Marcello Galeotti, 2008. "Should we replace the environment?: Limits of economic growth in the presence of self-protective choices," International Journal of Social Economics, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 35(4), pages 283-297, March.
  9. Bird, Peter J. W. N., 1987. "The transferability and depletability of externalities," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 54-57, March.
  10. Auty, Richard M., 2007. "Natural resources, capital accumulation and the resource curse," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(4), pages 627-634, March.
  11. Bartolini, Stefano & Bonatti, Luigi, 2003. "Undesirable growth in a model with capital accumulation and environmental assets," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 8(01), pages 11-30, February.
  12. Antoci, Angelo & Bartolini, Stefano, 1999. "Negative externalities as the engine of growth in an evolutionary context," MPRA Paper 13908, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  13. Papyrakis, Elissaios & Gerlagh, Reyer, 2007. "Resource abundance and economic growth in the United States," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 1011-1039, May.
  14. Antoci, Angelo & Galeotti, Marcello & Russu, Paolo, 2005. "Consumption of private goods as substitutes for environmental goods in an economic growth model," MPRA Paper 13664, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  15. Gylfason, Thorvaldur & Herbertsson, Tryggvi Thor & Zoega, Gylfi, 1999. "A Mixed Blessing," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 3(02), pages 204-225, June.
  16. Sachs, Jeffrey D. & Warner, Andrew M., 1999. "The big push, natural resource booms and growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 43-76, June.
  17. Bartolini, Stefano & Bonatti, Luigi, 2002. "Environmental and social degradation as the engine of economic growth," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 1-16, November.
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