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Pricing the Limits to Growth from Minerals Depletion

  • Weitzman, Martin L.

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.

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File URL: http://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/3708467/Weitzman_PricingLimits.pdf
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Paper provided by Harvard University Department of Economics in its series Scholarly Articles with number 3708467.

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Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Quarterly Journal of Economics -Cambridge Massachusetts-
Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:3708467
Contact details of provider: Postal: Littauer Center, Cambridge, MA 02138
Phone: 617-495-2144
Fax: 617-495-7730
Web page: http://www.economics.harvard.edu/

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  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  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. William D. Nordhaus, 1995. "How Should We Measure Sustainable Income?," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1101, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  6. 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.
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