International Trade in Used Durable Goods: The Environmental Consequences of NAFTA
Previous studies of trade and the environment overwhelmingly focus on how trade affects where goods are produced. However, trade also affects where goods are consumed. In this paper we describe a model of trade with durable goods and non-homothetic preferences. In autarky, low-quality (used) goods are relatively inexpensive in high-income countries and free trade causes these goods to be exported to low-income countries. We then evaluate the environmental consequences of this pattern of trade using evidence from the North American Free Trade Agreement. Since trade restrictions were eliminated for used cars in 2005, over 2.5 million used cars have been exported from the United States to Mexico. Using a unique, vehicle-level dataset, we find that traded vehicles are dirtier than the stock of vehicles in the United States and cleaner than the stock in Mexico, so trade leads average vehicle emissions to decrease in both countries. Total greenhouse gas emissions increase, primarily because trade gives new life to vehicles that otherwise would have been scrapped.
|Date of creation:||Dec 2008|
|Publication status:||published as American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 2010, 2(4), 58-82.|
|Note:||EEE IO ITI|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.|
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Feenstra, Robert C. & Hanson, Gordon H., 1997.
"Foreign direct investment and relative wages: Evidence from Mexico's maquiladoras,"
Journal of International Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 371-393, May.
- Robert C. Feenstra & Gordon H. Hanson, 1995. "Foreign Direct Investment and Relative Wages: Evidence from Mexico's Maquiladoras," NBER Working Papers 5122, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- McAusland, Carol, 2003.
"Trade, Politics,and the Environment: Tailpipe vs. Smokestack,"
University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series
qt0406x646, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
- McAusland, Carol, 2008. "Trade, politics, and the environment: Tailpipe vs. smokestack," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 52-71, January.
- Gruenspecht, Howard K, 1982. "Differentiated Regulation: The Case of Auto Emissions Standards," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(2), pages 328-331, May.
- Janet Currie & Matthew Neidell, 2005.
"Air Pollution and Infant Health: What Can We Learn from California's Recent Experience?,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 120(3), pages 1003-1030.
- Currie, Janet & Neidell, Matthew, 2004. "Air Pollution and Infant Health: What Can We Learn From California's Recent Experience?," IZA Discussion Papers 1056, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Janet Currie & Matthew Neidell, 2004. "Air Pollution and Infant Health: What Can We Learn From California's Recent Experience," NBER Working Papers 10251, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 2005.
"Does Air Quality Matter? Evidence from the Housing Market,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 376-424, April.
- Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 1998. "Does Air Quality Matter? Evidence from the Housing Market," NBER Working Papers 6826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Lucas W. Davis, 2008. "The Effect of Driving Restrictions on Air Quality in Mexico City," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(1), pages 38-81, 02.
- Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 1999.
"The Impact of Air Pollution on Infant Mortality: Evidence from Geographic Variation in Pollution Shocks Induced by a Recession,"
NBER Working Papers
7442, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 2003. "The Impact of Air Pollution on Infant Mortality: Evidence from Geographic Variation in Pollution Shocks Induced by a Recession," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(3), pages 1121-1167.
- Danilo Pelletiere & Kenneth A. Reinart, 2002. "The Political Economy of Used Automobile Protection in Latin America," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(7), pages 1019-1037, 07.
- Coase, Ronald H, 1972. "Durability and Monopoly," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(1), pages 143-149, April.
- Arik Levinson & M. Scott Taylor, 2004.
"Unmasking the Pollution Haven Effect,"
NBER Working Papers
10629, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Susanna Esteban & Matthew Shum, 2007. "Durable-goods oligopoly with secondary markets: the case of automobiles," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 38(2), pages 332-354, 06.
- Danilo Pelletiere & Kenneth A. Reinert, 2004. "Used automobile protection and trade: Gravity and ordered probit analysis," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 29(4), pages 737-751, December.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14565. 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: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.