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Climate Change Mitigation Strategies in Fast-Growing Countries: The Benefits of Early Action

  • Massimo Tavoni

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • Valentina Bosetti

    (Princeton University, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei and CMCC)

  • Carlo Carraro

    (University of Venice, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei, CEPR, CESifo and CMCC)

This paper builds on the assumption that OECD countries are (or will soon be) taking actions to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. These actions, however, will not be sufficient to control global warming, unless developing countries also get involved in the cooperative effort to reduce GHG emissions. This paper investigates the best short-term strategies that emerging economies can adopt in reacting to OECD countries’ mitigation effort, given the common long-term goal to prevent excessive warming without hampering economic growth. Results indicate that developing countries would incur substantial economic losses by following a myopic strategy that disregards climate in the short-run, and that their optimal investment behaviour is to anticipate the implementation of a climate policy by roughly 10 years. Investing in innovation ahead of time is also found to be advantageous. The degree of policy anticipation is shown to be important in determining the financial transfers of an international carbon market meant to provide incentives for the participation of developing countries. This is especially relevant for China, whose recent and foreseeable trends of investments in innovation are consistent with the adoption of domestic emission reduction obligations in 2030.

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Paper provided by Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei in its series Working Papers with number 2009.53.

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Date of creation: Jul 2009
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Handle: RePEc:fem:femwpa:2009.53
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  1. Bosetti, Valentina & Carraro, Carlo & Massetti, Emanuele & Tavoni, Massimo, 2007. "Optimal Energy Investment and R&D Strategies to Stabilise Greenhouse Gas Atmospheric Concentrations," CEPR Discussion Papers 6549, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Carlo Carraro & Valentina Bosetti & Alessandra Sgobbi & Massimo Tavoni, 2008. "Delayed Participation of Developing Countries to Climate Agreements: Should Action in the EU and US be Postponed?," Working Papers 2008_28, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".
  3. Richard Tol, 1999. "Spatial and Temporal Efficiency in Climate Policy: Applications of FUND," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 14(1), pages 33-49, July.
  4. Bosetti, Valentina & Carraro, Carlo & Massetti, Emanuele & Sgobbi, Alessandra & Tavoni, Massimo, 2009. "Optimal energy investment and R&D strategies to stabilize atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 123-137, May.
  5. Valentina Bosetti, Carlo Carraro, Marzio Galeotti, Emanuele Massetti, Massimo Tavoni, 2006. "A World induced Technical Change Hybrid Model," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Special I), pages 13-38.
  6. Huifang Tian & John Whalley, 2008. "China's Participation in Global Environmental Negotiations," NBER Working Papers 14460, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Valentina Bosetti & David Tomberlin, 2004. "Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei," Working Papers 2004.102, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
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