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The Green Industry: An Examination of Environmental Products Manufacturing

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  • Randy A. Becker
  • Ronald J. Shadbegian

Abstract

The “green industry” is often noted in discussions of the costs and benefits of environmental policy, and it has been characterized as a unique industry with substantial potential for employment growth, well-paying jobs, and export opportunities. In this paper, we examine the characteristics and recent economic performance of the green industry, using establishment-level data on environmental products manufacturers (EPMs) from the 1995 Survey of Environmental Products and Services, together with data from the Annual Survey of Manufactures and various Census of Manufactures. Results suggest that there are some differences between EPMs and their non-EPM counterparts in the same industry, in terms of employment, employee compensation, exports, and productivity. However, we do not find any evidence that EPMs performed any better than otherwise similar plants, in terms of survival, employment growth, wage growth, and export growth. Our findings offer a more complex and nuanced portrayal of the green industry than is typical, and we suggest that this industry may not be as exceptional as is sometimes maintained.

Suggested Citation

  • Randy A. Becker & Ronald J. Shadbegian, 2008. "The Green Industry: An Examination of Environmental Products Manufacturing," NCEE Working Paper Series 200810, National Center for Environmental Economics, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, revised Oct 2008.
  • Handle: RePEc:nev:wpaper:wp200810
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    File URL: https://www.epa.gov/environmental-economics/working-paper-green-industry-examination-environmental-products
    File Function: First version, 2008
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Steven J. Davis & John C. Haltiwanger & Scott Schuh, 1998. "Job Creation and Destruction," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262540932, March.
    2. Lucia Foster & John Haltiwanger & Chad Syverson, 2008. "Reallocation, Firm Turnover, and Efficiency: Selection on Productivity or Profitability?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 394-425, March.
    3. Halvorsen, Robert & Palmquist, Raymond, 1980. "The Interpretation of Dummy Variables in Semilogarithmic Equations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 474-475, June.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Robert J R Elliott & Joanne K Lindley, 2014. "Green Jobs and Growth in the United States: Green Shoots or False Dawn?," Discussion Papers 14-09, Department of Economics, University of Birmingham.
    2. repec:ilo:ilowps:462097 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Costantini, Valeria & Mazzanti, Massimiliano, 2012. "On the green and innovative side of trade competitiveness? The impact of environmental policies and innovation on EU exports," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 132-153.
    4. Roberto Antonietti & Alberto Marzucchi, 2013. "Green Investment Strategies and Export Performance: A Firm-level Investigation," Working Papers 2013.76, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    5. Raitano, Michele & Romano, Eleonora & Zoppoli, Pietro, 2017. "Renewable energy sources in Italy: Sectorial intensity and effects on earnings," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 117-127.
    6. Elliott, Robert J.R. & Lindley, Joanne K., 2017. "Environmental Jobs and Growth in the United States," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 132(C), pages 232-244.
    7. Antonietti, Roberto & Marzucchi, Alberto, 2014. "Green tangible investment strategies and export performance: A firm-level investigation," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 150-161.
    8. Simone Borghesi & Giulio Cainelli & Massimiliano Mazzanti, 2012. "Brown Sunsets and Green Dawns in the Industrial Sector: Environmental Innovations, Firm Behavior and the European Emission Trading," Working Papers 2012.03, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.

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