IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/fem/femwpa/2014.73.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Directed Technical Change With Capital-Embodied Technologies: Implications For Climate Policy

Author

Listed:
  • James A. Lennox

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM))

  • Jan Witajewski

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM))

Abstract

We develop a theoretical model of directed technical change in which clean (zero emissions) and dirty (emissions-intensive) technologies are embodied in long-lived capital. We show how obsolescence costs generated by technological embodiment create inertia in a transition to clean growth. Optimal policies involve higher and longer-lasting clean R&D subsidies than when technologies are disembodied. From a low level, emissions taxes are initially increased rapidly, so they are higher in the long run. There is more warming. Introducing spillovers from an exogenous technological frontier representing non-energy-intensive technologies reduces mitigation costs. Optimal taxes and subsidies are lower and there is less warming.

Suggested Citation

  • James A. Lennox & Jan Witajewski, 2014. "Directed Technical Change With Capital-Embodied Technologies: Implications For Climate Policy," Working Papers 2014.73, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  • Handle: RePEc:fem:femwpa:2014.73
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.feem.it/userfiles/attach/2014827106594NDL2014-073.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Dechezlepretre, Antoine & Martin, Ralf & Mohnen, Myra, 2014. "Knowledge spillovers from clean and dirty technologies," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 60501, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    2. Daron Acemoglu & Philippe Aghion & Leonardo Bursztyn & David Hemous, 2012. "The Environment and Directed Technical Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 131-166, February.
    3. Zon, Adriaan van, 2016. "On the optimum timing of the global carbon-transition under conditions of extreme weather-related damages: further green paradoxical results," MERIT Working Papers 010, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    4. D. S. Prasada Rao & Bart van Ark, 2013. "Introduction," Chapters,in: World Economic Performance, chapter 1, pages 1-6 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    5. Joelle Noailly & Victoria Shestalova, 2013. "Knowledge Spillovers from Renewable energy Technologies, Lessons from patent citations," CIES Research Paper series 22-2013, Centre for International Environmental Studies, The Graduate Institute.
    6. Martin L. Weitzman, 2012. "GHG Targets as Insurance Against Catastrophic Climate Damages," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 14(2), pages 221-244, March.
    7. Shalizi, Zmarak & Lecocq, Franck, 2009. "Climate change and the economics of targeted mitigation in sectors with long-lived capital stock," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5063, The World Bank.
    8. Smulders, Sjak & de Nooij, Michiel, 2003. "The impact of energy conservation on technology and economic growth," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 59-79, February.
    9. Braun, Frauke G & Schmidt-Ehmcke, Jens & Zloczysti, Petra, 2010. "Innovative Activity in Wind and Solar Technology: Empirical Evidence on Knowledge Spillovers Using Patent Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 7865, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. Pottier, Antonin & Hourcade, Jean-Charles & Espagne, Etienne, 2014. "Modelling the redirection of technical change: The pitfalls of incorporeal visions of the economy," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 213-218.
    11. P. R. Kumaraswamy, 2013. "Introduction," China Report, , vol. 49(1), pages 1-3, February.
    12. Paul David & Adriaan van Zon, 2013. "Designing an Optimal 'Tech Fix' Path to Global Climate Stability: Directed R&D and Embodied Technical Change in a Multi-phase Framework," Discussion Papers 12-029, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
    13. Philippe Aghion & Antoine Dechezleprêtre & David Hémous & Ralf Martin & John Van Reenen, 2016. "Carbon Taxes, Path Dependency, and Directed Technical Change: Evidence from the Auto Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 124(1), pages 1-51.
    14. Krusell, Per, 1998. "Investment-Specific R&D and the Decline in the Relative Price of Capital," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 3(2), pages 131-141, June.
    15. Mattauch, Linus & Creutzig, Felix & Edenhofer, Ottmar, 2015. "Avoiding carbon lock-in: Policy options for advancing structural change," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 49-63.
    16. Boucekkine, Raouf & del Rio, Fernando & Licandro, Omar, 2005. "Obsolescence and modernization in the growth process," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 153-171, June.
    17. Gunnar Luderer & Valentina Bosetti & Michael Jakob & Marian Leimbach & Jan Steckel & Henri Waisman & Ottmar Edenhofer, 2012. "The economics of decarbonizing the energy system—results and insights from the RECIPE model intercomparison," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 114(1), pages 9-37, September.
    18. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi & Krusell, Per, 1997. "Long-Run Implications of Investment-Specific Technological Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(3), pages 342-362, June.
    19. Richard S. J. Tol, 2009. "The Economic Effects of Climate Change," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(2), pages 29-51, Spring.
    20. Ottmar Edenhofer , Brigitte Knopf, Terry Barker, Lavinia Baumstark, Elie Bellevrat, Bertrand Chateau, Patrick Criqui, Morna Isaac, Alban Kitous, Socrates Kypreos, Marian Leimbach, Kai Lessmann, Bertra, 2010. "The Economics of Low Stabilization: Model Comparison of Mitigation Strategies and Costs," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Special I).
    21. van Zon, Adriaan & Yetkiner, I. Hakan, 2003. "An endogenous growth model with embodied energy-saving technical change," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 81-103, February.
    22. T. Heller & R. Huet & Bénédicte Vidaillet, 2013. "Introduction," Post-Print hal-00848256, HAL.
    23. Popp, David & Newell, Richard, 2012. "Where does energy R&D come from? Examining crowding out from energy R&D," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 980-991.
    24. Greaker, Mads & Heggedal , Tom-Reiel & Rosendahl , Knut Einar, 2017. "Environmental Policy and the Direction of Technical Change," Working Paper Series 09-2017, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, School of Economics and Business.
    25. repec:hal:journl:hal-01111105 is not listed on IDEAS
    26. Worrell, Ernst & Biermans, Gijs, 2005. "Move over! Stock turnover, retrofit and industrial energy efficiency," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(7), pages 949-962, May.
    27. Jean-Charles Hourcade & Antonin Pottier & Etienne Espagne, 2011. "The Environment and Directed Technical Change: Comment," Working Papers 2011.95, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    28. Sue Wing, Ian, 2008. "Explaining the declining energy intensity of the U.S. economy," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 21-49, January.
    29. Mikhail Golosov & John Hassler & Per Krusell & Aleh Tsyvinski, 2014. "Optimal Taxes on Fossil Fuel in General Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 82(1), pages 41-88, January.
    30. Hsieh, Chang-Tai, 2001. "Endogenous growth and obsolescence," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 153-171, October.
    31. Malte Schwoon & Richard S.J. Tol, 2006. "Optimal CO2-abatement with Socio-economic Inertia and Induced Technological Change," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 4), pages 25-60.
    32. Unruh, Gregory C., 2000. "Understanding carbon lock-in," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(12), pages 817-830, October.
    33. Thomas Sterner, 1990. "Energy Efficiency and Capital Embodied Technical Change: The Case of Mexican Cement Manufacturing," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 2), pages 155-167.
    34. Joel C. Gibbons, 1984. "Energy Prices and Capital Obsolescence: Evidence from the Oil Embargo Period," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 29-44.
    35. Franck Lecocq & Zmarak Shalizi, 2014. "The economics of targeted mitigation in infrastructure," Climate Policy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(2), pages 187-208, March.
    36. Grubb, Michael, 1997. "Technologies, energy systems and the timing of CO2 emissions abatement : An overview of economic issues," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 159-172, February.
    37. Nemet, Gregory F., 2012. "Inter-technology knowledge spillovers for energy technologies," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 1259-1270.
    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. James Lennox & Ramiro Parrado, 2015. "Capital-embodied Technologies in CGE Models," Working Papers 2015.02, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Climate Change Mitigation; Directed Technical Change; Capital-Embodiment; Investment-Specific Technological Change; Obsolescence;

    JEL classification:

    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • O44 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Environment and Growth
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • Q55 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Technological Innovation
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:fem:femwpa:2014.73. 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: (barbara racah). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/feemmit.html .

    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.