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On Environmental Subsidy/Tax Policy with Heterogeneous Consumers: An Application of an Environmentally Differentiated Duopoly Model

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  • Tsuyoshi Toshimitsu

    () (School of Economics, Kwansei Gakuin University)

Abstract

We apply a model of an environmentally differentiated duopoly to the analysis of environmental policy in the form of a subsidy/tax on consumers based on emission levels of products. More specifically, we consider environmental and welfare effects of subsidizing consumers who purchase environmental-friendly goods such as hybrid vehicles. Focusing on types of market coverage by heterogeneous consumers, we examine the issue in the cases of a Bertrand and a Cournot duopoly. In the case of full market coverage with a Bertrand duopoly, an environmental subsidy improves the environment and is socially optimal. However, in the case of partial market coverage, irrespective of mode of competition, the optimal policy depends on the magnitude of the marginal social valuation of environmental damage. That is, if the marginal social valuation of environmental damage is sufficiently large (small), an environmental tax (subsidy) is optimal. Furthermore, in the Bertrand duopoly case, the effect of subsidy on the environment is ambiguous, whereas in the Cournot duopoly case, the subsidy degrades the environment.

Suggested Citation

  • Tsuyoshi Toshimitsu, 2008. "On Environmental Subsidy/Tax Policy with Heterogeneous Consumers: An Application of an Environmentally Differentiated Duopoly Model," Discussion Paper Series 38, School of Economics, Kwansei Gakuin University, revised Apr 2008.
  • Handle: RePEc:kgu:wpaper:38
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    File URL: http://192.218.163.163/RePEc/pdf/kgdp38.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Cremer, Helmuth & Thisse, Jacques-Francois, 1999. "On the taxation of polluting products in a differentiated industry," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(3), pages 575-594, March.
    2. Nash, Chris & Sansom, Tom & Still, Ben, 2001. "Modifying transport prices to internalise externalities: evidence from European case studies," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 413-431, July.
    3. Kahn, Matthew E., 2007. "Do greens drive Hummers or hybrids? Environmental ideology as a determinant of consumer choice," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 129-145, September.
    4. Cremer, Helmuth & Gahvari, Firouz & Ladoux, Norbert, 1998. "Externalities and optimal taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 343-364, December.
    5. Cremer, Helmuth & Gahvari, Firouz & Ladoux, Norbert, 2003. "Environmental taxes with heterogeneous consumers: an application to energy consumption in France," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(12), pages 2791-2815, December.
    6. Baumol,William J. & Oates,Wallace E., 1988. "The Theory of Environmental Policy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521322249, March.
    7. C. Lombardini-Riipinen, 2005. "Optimal Tax Policy under Environmental Quality Competition," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 32(3), pages 317-336, November.
    8. Bansal, Sangeeta & Gangopadhyay, Shubhashis, 2003. "Tax/subsidy policies in the presence of environmentally aware consumers," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 45(2, Supple), pages 333-355, March.
    9. Ida Ferrara, 2007. "Automobile quality choice under pollution control regulation," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 38(3), pages 353-372, November.
    10. Proost, Stef & Van Dender, Kurt, 2001. "The welfare impacts of alternative policies to address atmospheric pollution in urban road transport," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 383-411, July.
    11. Toshimitsu, Tsuyoshi, 2008. "Effect of a tariff on the environment and welfare: The case of an environmental differentiated duopoly in a Green Market," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 114-128, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Toshimitsu, Tsuyoshi, 2010. "On the paradoxical case of a consumer-based environmental subsidy policy," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 159-164, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Environmentally differentiated product; Environmental subsidy/tax; Green market; Bertrand and Cournot duopoly;

    JEL classification:

    • D43 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Oligopoly and Other Forms of Market Imperfection
    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies
    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets

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