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Pricing The Limits To Growth From Minerals Depletion

  • Martin L. Weitzman

This paper evaluates the loss of global welfare from exhaustion of nonrenewable resources, such as oil. The underlying methodology represents an empirical application of some recent developments in the theory of green accounting and sustainability. The paper estimates that the world loses the equivalent of about 1 percent of final consumption per year from finiteness of the earth's resources, compared with a counterfactual trajectory where global extraction of minerals is allowed to remain forever constant at today's flow rates and extraction costs. © 2000 the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Quarterly Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 114 (1999)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
Pages: 691-706

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:qjecon:v:114:y:1999:i:2:p:691-706
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  1. Martin L. Weitzman & Karl-Gustaf Lofgren, 1996. "On the Welfare Significance of Green Accounting as Taught by Parable," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1755, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  2. Stollery, Kenneth R., 1983. "Mineral depletion with cost as the extraction limit: A model applied to the behavior of prices in the nickel industry," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 151-165, June.
  3. M. L. Weitzman, 1974. "On the Welfare Significance of National Product in Dynamic Economy," Working papers 125, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Pindyck, Robert S., 1987. "On monopoly power in extractive resource markets," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 128-142, June.
  5. Pindyck, Robert S, 1978. "Gains to Producers from the Cartelization of Exhaustible Resources," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(2), pages 238-51, May.
  6. William D. Nordhaus, 1995. "How Should We Measure Sustainable Income?," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1101, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
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