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Climate Change Policy under Spatial Heat Transport and Polar Amplification

Listed author(s):
  • William Brock
  • Anastasios Xepapadeas

This paper is, to our knowledge, the first paper in climate economics to consider the combination of spatial heat transport and polar amplification. We simplified the problem by stratifying the Earth into latitude belts and assuming, as in North et al. (1981), that the two hemispheres were symmetric. Our results suggest that it is possible to build climate economic models that include the very real climatic phenomena of heat transport and polar amplification, and still maintain analytical tractability. We demonstrate the importance of heat transfer and polar amplification in the welfare analysis of climate change, and in particular on the social price of the climate change externality. Furthermore, we show that the effect of heat transfer and polar amplification on climate policy depend upon the interaction of climate component dynamics with the distribution of welfare weights, population, and productive capacities across latitudes. We discuss optimal fossil fuel taxes in a competitive environment with income effects and show that optimal taxes have a spatial structure and are dependent on each latitude�s output. In addition, we characterize the interactions between spatial transport phenomena and the competitive equilibrium price path of tradable permits. Using general power utility functions, we show that an increase in the coefficient of relative risk aversion will reduce the social price of the climate externality.

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File URL: http://wpa.deos.aueb.gr/docs/Climate.Change.Policy.Spatial.Heat.Transport.and.Polar.Amplification.pdf
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Paper provided by Athens University of Economics and Business in its series DEOS Working Papers with number 1604.

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Date of creation: 26 Feb 2016
Handle: RePEc:aue:wpaper:1604
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  1. Melissa Dell & Benjamin F. Jones & Benjamin A. Olken, 2012. "Temperature Shocks and Economic Growth: Evidence from the Last Half Century," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 66-95, July.
  2. Boucekkine, Raouf & Camacho, Carmen & Zou, Benteng, 2009. "Bridging The Gap Between Growth Theory And The New Economic Geography: The Spatial Ramsey Model," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 13(01), pages 20-45, February.
  3. Boucekkine, R. & Camacho, C. & Fabbri, G., 2013. "Spatial dynamics and convergence: The spatial AK model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 148(6), pages 2719-2736.
  4. Brock, William & Engström, Gustav & Xepapadeas, Anastasios, 2014. "Spatial climate-economic models in the design of optimal climate policies across locations," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 69(C), pages 78-103.
  5. Desmet, Klaus & Rossi-Hansberg, Esteban, 2015. "On the spatial economic impact of global warming," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 16-37.
  6. Klaus Desmet & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2010. "On Spatial Dynamics," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(1), pages 43-63.
  7. Yongyang Cai & Kenneth L. Judd & Thomas S. Lontzek, 2015. "The Social Cost of Carbon with Economic and Climate Risks," Papers 1504.06909, arXiv.org, revised Apr 2015.
  8. Mendelsohn, Robert & Dinar, Ariel & Williams, Larry, 2006. "The distributional impact of climate change on rich and poor countries," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(02), pages 159-178, April.
  9. Partha Dasgupta, 2008. "Discounting climate change," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 37(2), pages 141-169, December.
  10. Brock, William A. & Engström, Gustav & Grass, Dieter & Xepapadeas, Anastasios, 2013. "Energy balance climate models and general equilibrium optimal mitigation policies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(12), pages 2371-2396.
  11. Simon Dietz & Nicholas Stern, 2015. "Endogenous growth, convexity of damage and climate risk: how Nordhaus’ framework supports deep cuts in carbon emissions," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 58406, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  12. Martin L. Weitzman, 2014. "Can Negotiating a Uniform Carbon Price Help to Internalize the Global Warming Externality?," Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(1), pages 29-49.
  13. Simon Dietz & Nicholas Stern, 2015. "Endogenous Growth, Convexity of Damage and Climate Risk: How Nordhaus' Framework Supports Deep Cuts in Carbon Emissions," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 0(583), pages 574-620, 03.
  14. Elisabeth J. Moyer & Mark D. Woolley & Nathan J. Matteson & Michael J. Glotter & David A. Weisbach, 2014. "Climate Impacts on Economic Growth as Drivers of Uncertainty in the Social Cost of Carbon," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 43(2), pages 401-425.
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