Which industry is greener? An empirical study of nine industries in OECD countries
This study analyzed the relationship between the CO2 emissions of different industries and economic growth in OECD countries from 1970 to 2005. We tested an environmental Kuznets curve (EKC) hypothesis and found that total CO2 emissions from nine industries show an N-shaped trend instead of an inverted U or monotonic increasing trend with increasing income. The EKC hypothesis for sector-level CO2 emissions was supported in the (1) paper, pulp, and printing industry; (2) wood and wood products industry; and (3) construction industry. We also found that emissions from coal and oil increase with economic growth in the steel and construction industries. In addition, the non-metallic minerals, machinery, and transport equipment industries tend to have increased emissions from oil and electricity with economic growth. Finally, the EKC turning point and the relationship between GDP per capita and sectoral CO2 emissions differ among industries according to the fuel type used. Therefore, environmental policies for CO2 reduction must consider these differences in industrial characteristics.
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