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Carbon Taxes and Joint Implementation An applied general equilibrium analysis for Germany and India

  • Böhringer, Christoph
  • Conrad, Klaus
  • Löschel, Andreas

Germany has committed itself to reducing its carbon emissions by 25 percent in 2005 as compared to 1990 emission levels. To achieve this goal, the government has recently launched an environmental tax reform which entails a continuous increase in energy taxes in conjunction with a revenue-neutral cut in non-wage labor costs. This policy is supposed to yield a double dividend, reducing both, the problem of global warming and high unemployment rates. In addition to domestic actions, international treaties on climate protection allow for the supplementary use of flexible instruments to exploit cheaper emission reduction possibilities elsewhere. One concrete option for Germany would be to enter joint implementation with developing countries such as India where Germany pays emission reduction abroad rather than meeting its reduction target solely by domestic action. In this paper, we investigate whether an environmental tax reform cum joint implementation (JI) provides employment and overall efficiency gains as compared to an environmental tax reform stand-alone (ETR). We address this question in the framework of a large-scale general equilibrium model for Germany and India where Germany may undertake joint implementation with the Indian electricity sector. Our main finding is that joint implementation offsets adverse effects of carbon emission constraints on the German economy. JI significantly lowers the level of carbon taxes and thus reduces the total costs of abatement as well as negative effects on labor demand. In addition, JI triggers direct investment demand for energy efficient power plants produced in Germany. This provides positive employment effects and additional income for Germany. For India, joint implementation equips its electricity industry with scarce capital goods leading to a more efficient power production with lower electricity prices for the economy and substantial welfare gains.

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Paper provided by Institut fuer Volkswirtschaftslehre und Statistik, Abteilung fuer Volkswirtschaftslehre in its series Discussion Papers with number 591.

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Date of creation: 2000
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mnh:vpaper:1020
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  1. Bose, Ranjan Kumar & Shukla, Megha, 1999. "Elasticities of electricity demand in India," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 137-146, March.
  2. Lawrence Goulder, 1995. "Environmental taxation and the double dividend: A reader's guide," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 2(2), pages 157-183, August.
  3. Stefan Bach, 1997. "Steuerreform in Deutschland," Vierteljahrshefte zur Wirtschaftsforschung / Quarterly Journal of Economic Research, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 66(3-4), pages 291-316.
  4. John Hutton & Anna Ruocco, 1999. "Tax Reform and Employment in Europe," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 263-287, August.
  5. Jackson, Tim, 1995. "Joint implementation and cost-effectiveness under the Framework Convention on Climate Change," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 117-138, February.
  6. Christoph Böhringer & Thomas Rutherford, 2002. "Carbon Abatement and International Spillovers," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 22(3), pages 391-417, July.
  7. Heinz Welsch, 1996. "Recycling of carbon/energy taxes and the labor market," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 8(2), pages 141-155, September.
  8. Berndt, Ernst R. & Fuss, Melvyn A., 1986. "Productivity measurement with adjustments for variations in capacity utilization and other forms of temporary equilibrium," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1-2), pages 7-29.
  9. Jean-Marc Burniaux & John P. Martin & Giuseppe Nicoletti & Joaquim Oliveira Martins, 1992. "GREEN a Multi-Sector, Multi-Region General Equilibrium Model for Quantifying the Costs of Curbing CO2 Emissions: A Technical Manual," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 116, OECD Publishing.
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