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Environmental policies and productivity growth: Evidence across industries and firms

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  • Albrizio, Silvia
  • Kozluk, Tomasz
  • Zipperer, Vera

Abstract

This paper investigates the impact of changes in environmental policy stringency on industry- and firm-level productivity growth in a panel of OECD countries. To test the strong version of the Porter Hypothesis (PH), we extend a neo-Schumpeterian productivity model to allow for effects of environmental policies. We use a new environmental policy stringency (EPS) index and let the effect of countries׳ environmental policies vary with the pollution intensity of the industry and with the countries’ and firms’ technological advancement. A tightening of environmental policy is associated with a short-term increase in industry-level productivity growth in the most technologically-advanced countries. This effect diminishes with the distance to the global productivity frontier, eventually becoming insignificant. For the average firm, no evidence of PH is found. However, the most productive firms see a temporary boost in productivity growth, while the less productive ones experience a productivity slowdown.

Suggested Citation

  • Albrizio, Silvia & Kozluk, Tomasz & Zipperer, Vera, 2017. "Environmental policies and productivity growth: Evidence across industries and firms," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 209-226.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeeman:v:81:y:2017:i:c:p:209-226
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jeem.2016.06.002
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Environmental policy stringency; Environmental regulation; Porter Hypothesis; Multifactor productivity;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity
    • O44 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Environment and Growth
    • Q50 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - General
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy

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