IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/ucp/jaerec/doi10.1086-680317.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Energy Leapfrogging

Author

Listed:
  • Arthur A. van Benthem

Abstract

Today's less developed countries (LDCs) have access to energy technologies that did not exist when today's richer countries were at similar stages of development. Do LDCs therefore consume less energy per capita than rich countries in the past? And is their economic growth associated with a lower growth in energy consumption? Can they "leapfrog" to a lower-carbon economy? I use data on energy consumption, prices, and gross domestic product for 76 countries to estimate the energy intensity of income growth for both current LDCs and industrialized countries in the past. I find that, despite dramatic improvements in energy efficiency, economic growth in LDCs is not less energy-intensive than past growth in industrialized countries. Energy savings from access to more efficient technologies have been offset by other trends, including a shift toward more energy-intensive consumption bundles and compositional changes in industry such as outsourcing. This can have serious implications for energy consumption projections.

Suggested Citation

  • Arthur A. van Benthem, 2015. "Energy Leapfrogging," Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(1), pages 93-132.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jaerec:doi:10.1086/680317
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/680317
    Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/680317
    Download Restriction: Access to the online full text or PDF requires a subscription.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ang, B. W., 2004. "Decomposition analysis for policymaking in energy:: which is the preferred method?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(9), pages 1131-1139, June.
    2. R. C. D'Arge & K. C. Kogiku, 1973. "Economic Growth and the Environment," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 40(1), pages 61-77.
    3. Fisher-Vanden, Karen & Jefferson, Gary H. & Liu, Hongmei & Tao, Quan, 2004. "What is driving China's decline in energy intensity?," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 77-97, March.
    4. Liu, Na & Ang, B.W., 2007. "Factors shaping aggregate energy intensity trend for industry: Energy intensity versus product mix," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 609-635, July.
    5. Arthur van Benthem & Mattia Romani, 2009. "Fuelling Growth: What Drives Energy Demand in Developing Countries?," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 91-114.
    6. Lucas W. Davis & Alan Fuchs & Paul Gertler, 2014. "Cash for Coolers: Evaluating a Large-Scale Appliance Replacement Program in Mexico," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 6(4), pages 207-238, November.
    7. Catherine Wolfram & Orie Shelef & Paul Gertler, 2012. "How Will Energy Demand Develop in the Developing World?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 26(1), pages 119-138, Winter.
    8. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1369-1401, December.
    9. Susanto Basu & David N. Weil, 1998. "Appropriate Technology and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(4), pages 1025-1054.
    10. Daniel L. Millimet & John A. List & Thanasis Stengos, 2003. "The Environmental Kuznets Curve: Real Progress or Misspecified Models?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(4), pages 1038-1047, November.
    11. Arik Levinson, 2010. "Offshoring Pollution: Is the United States Increasingly Importing Polluting Goods?," Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 4(1), pages 63-83, Winter.
    12. De Long, J Bradford, 1988. "Productivity Growth, Convergence, and Welfare: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(5), pages 1138-1154, December.
    13. Christopher R. Knittel, 2011. "Automobiles on Steroids: Product Attribute Trade-Offs and Technological Progress in the Automobile Sector," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(7), pages 3368-3399, December.
    14. Johannes van Biesebroeck, 2003. "Productivity Dynamics with Technology Choice: An Application to Automobile Assembly," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(1), pages 167-198.
    15. Fisher-Vanden, Karen & Ho, Mun S., 2010. "Technology, development, and the environment," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 94-108, January.
    16. Richard F. Garbaccio & Mun S. Ho & Dale W. Jorgenson, 1999. "Why Has the Energy-Output Ratio Fallen in China?," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 63-91.
    17. Daron Acemoglu & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2001. "Productivity Differences," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(2), pages 563-606.
    18. Auffhammer, Maximilian & Carson, Richard T., 2008. "Forecasting the path of China's CO2 emissions using province-level information," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 55(3), pages 229-247, May.
    19. van Benthem, Arthur & Kerr, Suzi, 2013. "Scale and transfers in international emissions offset programs," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 31-46.
    20. Gene M. Grossman & Alan B. Krueger, 1995. "Economic Growth and the Environment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(2), pages 353-377.
    21. Susmita Dasgupta & Benoit Laplante & Hua Wang & David Wheeler, 2002. "Confronting the Environmental Kuznets Curve," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(1), pages 147-168, Winter.
    22. Zhang, ZhongXiang, 2003. "Why did the energy intensity fall in China's industrial sector in the 1990s? The relative importance of structural change and intensity change," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(6), pages 625-638, November.
    23. Kenneth B. Medlock III & Ronald Soligo, 2001. "Economic Development and End-Use Energy Demand," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 2), pages 77-105.
    24. Baumol, William J, 1986. "Productivity Growth, Convergence, and Welfare: What the Long-run Data Show," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(5), pages 1072-1085, December.
    25. Dani Rodrik, 2013. "Unconditional Convergence in Manufacturing," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 128(1), pages 165-204.
    26. Hillard G. Huntington, 2006. "A Note on Price Asymmetry as Induced Technical Change," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 1-8.
    27. Nordhaus, William, 2007. "Alternative measures of output in global economic-environmental models: Purchasing power parity or market exchange rates?," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 349-372, May.
    28. Roger Fouquet & Peter J.G. Pearson, 2006. "Seven Centuries of Energy Services: The Price and Use of Light in the United Kingdom (1300-2000)," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 139-178.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. repec:spr:climat:v:143:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s10584-017-2003-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. repec:eee:eneeco:v:67:y:2017:i:c:p:91-97 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Burke, Paul J. & Csereklyei, Zsuzsanna, 2016. "Understanding the energy-GDP elasticity: A sectoral approach," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 199-210.
    4. repec:eee:eneeco:v:69:y:2018:i:c:p:128-139 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. David I. Stern, 2017. "How accurate are energy intensity projections?," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 143(3), pages 537-545, August.
    6. Gregor Semieniuk, 2018. "Energy in Economic Growth: Is Faster Growth Greener?," Working Papers 208, Department of Economics, SOAS, University of London, UK.

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ucp:jaerec:doi:10.1086/680317. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Journals Division). General contact details of provider: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JAERE/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.