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Population Growth and Natural Resource Scarcity: Long run development under seemingly unfavourable conditions

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  • Lucas Bretschger

Abstract

The paper considers an economy which is constrained by natural resource use and driven by knowledge accumulation. Resources are essential inputs in all the sectors. It is shown that population growth and poor input substitution are not detrimental but, on the contrary, even necessary for obtaining a sustainable consumption level. We find a new type of Hartwick rule defining the conditions for a constant innovation rate. The rule does not apply to capital but to labour growth, the crucial input in research. Furthermore, it relates to the sectoral structure of the economy and to demographic transition. The results continue to hold with a backstop technology and are extended for the case of minimum resource constraints.

Suggested Citation

  • Lucas Bretschger, 2010. "Population Growth and Natural Resource Scarcity: Long run development under seemingly unfavourable conditions," OxCarre Working Papers 037, Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford.
  • Handle: RePEc:oxf:oxcrwp:037
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Bruno Lanz & Simon Dietz & Timothy Swanson, 2017. "Global Population Growth, Technology, And Malthusian Constraints: A Quantitative Growth Theoretic Perspective," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 58, pages 973-1006, August.
    2. Karen Pittel & Lucas Bretschger, 2010. "The implications of heterogeneous resource intensities on technical change and growth," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 43(4), pages 1173-1197, November.
    3. Pietro Peretto & Simone Valente, 2015. "Growth on a finite planet: resources, technology and population in the long run," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 305-331, September.
    4. repec:eee:resene:v:49:y:2017:i:c:p:1-15 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. repec:eee:ecolec:v:144:y:2018:i:c:p:260-277 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Bruno Lanz & Simon Dietz & Tim Swanson, 2016. "Economic growth and agricultural land conversion under uncertain productivity improvements in agriculture," FOODSECURE Working papers 53, LEI Wageningen UR.
    7. Zhang Wei-Bin, 2014. "Land Value and Rent Dynamics in an Integrated Walrasian General Equilibrium and Neoclassical Growth Theory," Scientific Annals of Economics and Business, De Gruyter Open, vol. 61(2), pages 235-258, December.
    8. Andreas Schaefer, 2016. "Survival to Adulthood and the Growth Drag of Pollution," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 16/241, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
    9. Lanz, Bruno & Dietz, Simon & Swanson, Tim, 2018. "The Expansion of Modern Agriculture and Global Biodiversity Decline: An Integrated Assessment," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 144(C), pages 260-277.
    10. repec:spr:endesu:v:19:y:2017:i:5:d:10.1007_s10668-016-9842-3 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Zhang, W.-B., 2014. "Ethnic Human Capital Externalities and Inequality in a General Equilibrium Growth Model," Journal of the New Economic Association, New Economic Association, vol. 21(1), pages 33-54.
    12. Lucas Bretschger, 2016. "Is the Environment Compatible with Growth? Adopting an Integrated Framework," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 16/260, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
    13. Lopez, Ramon E. & Stocking, Andrew, 2009. "Bringing Growth Theory "Down to Earth"," Working Papers 48944, University of Maryland, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    14. Bretschger, Lucas, 2015. "Greening Economy, Graying Society," MPRA Paper 66218, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    15. Wei-Bin ZHANG, 2015. "Tourism, Trade And Wealth Accumulation With Endogenous Income And Wealth Distribution Among Countries," EcoForum, "Stefan cel Mare" University of Suceava, Romania, Faculty of Economics and Public Administration - Economy, Business Administration and Tourism Department., vol. 4(1), pages 1-1, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Population growthm non-renewable resources; poor input substitution; technical change; sustainability;

    JEL classification:

    • Q32 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Exhaustible Resources and Economic Development
    • Q55 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Technological Innovation
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models

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