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Cleaner firms or cleaner products? How product mix shapes emission intensity from manufacturing

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  • Barrows, Geoffrey
  • Ollivier, Hélène

Abstract

We explore the contribution of product mix in determining firm and aggregate emission intensity. First, using detailed firm-product emission intensity data from India, we find that more efficient firms are less emission intensive, and that products with the largest sales tend to be cleaner than other products within the firm. We also find that emission intensity in India dropped significantly between 1990-2010 through reallocations across firms, while product mix played a counteracting role in increasing firm emission intensity. Next, we develop a multi-product multi-factor model with heterogeneous firms, variable markups, and monopolistic competition in which each product has a specific emission intensity. We find that pro-competitive market developments lead to an improvement in the aggregate emission intensity – through reallocations across firms – even though firms can become dirtier or cleaner through product mix. This theoretical result fits particularly well the empirical facts.

Suggested Citation

  • Barrows, Geoffrey & Ollivier, Hélène, 2018. "Cleaner firms or cleaner products? How product mix shapes emission intensity from manufacturing," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 134-158.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeeman:v:88:y:2018:i:c:p:134-158
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jeem.2017.10.008
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    Cited by:

    1. Agnolucci, Paolo & Arvanitopoulos, Theodoros, 2019. "Industrial characteristics and air emissions: Long-term determinants in the UK manufacturing sector," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 546-566.
    2. J. Scott Holladay & Lawrence D. LaPlue III, 2020. "Decomposing Changes in Establishment Level Emissions with Entry and Exit," Working Papers 2020-01, University of Tennessee, Department of Economics.
    3. Hélène Ollivier & Geoffrey Barrows, 2020. "Foreign Demand, Developing Country Exports, and CO2 Emissions: Firm-Level Evidence from India," Post-Print halshs-03029861, HAL.
    4. LaPlue, Lawrence D., 2019. "The environmental effects of trade within and across sectors," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 118-139.
    5. Geoffrey Barrows & Helene Ollivier, 2018. "Foreign Demand and Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Empirical Evidence with Implications for Leakage," Working Papers 2018.16, FAERE - French Association of Environmental and Resource Economists.
    6. Kreickemeier, Udo & Richter, Philipp M., 2019. "Environmental policy and firm selection in the open economy," KCG Working Papers 15, Kiel Centre for Globalization (KCG).
    7. Inma Martínez-Zarzoso & Shampa Roy-Mukherjee & Finn-Ole Semrau & Anca M. Voicu, 2020. "Pollution Reduction by Rationalization in Indian Firms," Working Papers 2020.01, International Network for Economic Research - INFER.
    8. Brucal, Arlan & Javorcik, Beata & Love, Inessa, 2019. "Good for the environment, good for business: Foreign acquisitions and energy intensity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 121(C).
    9. Damien Dussaux & Francesco Vona & Antoine Dechezleprêtre, 2020. "Carbon Offshoring: Evidence from French Manufacturing Companies," Sciences Po publications 23/2020, Sciences Po.
    10. Lawrence D. LaPlue & Christopher A. Erickson, 2020. "Outsourcing, trade, technology, and greenhouse gas emissions," Environmental Economics and Policy Studies, Springer;Society for Environmental Economics and Policy Studies - SEEPS, vol. 22(2), pages 217-245, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Heterogeneous firms; Product mix; Emission intensity; Trade and the environment;

    JEL classification:

    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F18 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Environment
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth

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