IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Green Paradox and Directed Technical Change: The Effects of Subsidies to Clean R&D

  • Daubanes, Julien
  • Grimaud, André
  • Rougé, Luc

The "green paradox" literature points out that environmental policies which are anticipated to become gradually more stringent over time may induce a more rapid extraction of fossil fuels, thus having a detrimental effect to the environment. The manifestation of such phenomena has been extensively studied in the case of taxes directly applied to the extraction of a polluting non-renewable resource and of subsidies applied to its non-polluting substitutes. This paper examines the effects of subsidies to "clean" R&D activities, aimed to improve the productivity of non-polluting substitutes. We borrow standard assumptions from the directed-technical-change literature to take a full account of the private incentives to perform R&D and of the patterns of complementarity/substitutability between dirty resource and clean non-resource sectors. We show that a gradual increase in relative subsidies to clean R&D activities does not have the adverse green paradox effect, which contradicts an earlier made conjecture. Instead, the presence of several R&D sectors implies arbitrages which give rise to other quite paradoxical results. However substitutable or complementary sectors are, and whatever the induced technological bias is, clean-R&D-support policies always enhance the long-run productivity of the resource and thus result in a less rapid extraction.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
File Function: Full text
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Toulouse School of Economics (TSE) in its series TSE Working Papers with number 12-337.

in new window

Date of creation: Aug 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tse:wpaper:26215
Contact details of provider: Phone: (+33) 5 61 12 86 23
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
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.:

as in new window
  1. Xavier Sala-I-Martin, 1997. "Transfers, Social Safety Nets, and Economic Growth," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 44(1), pages 81-102, March.
  2. Cozzi, Guido & Giordani, Paolo E. & Zamparelli, Luca, 2007. "The refoundation of the symmetric equilibrium in Schumpeterian growth models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 136(1), pages 788-797, September.
  3. 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.
  4. Julien Daubanes & Pierre Lasserre, 2012. "Non-Renewable Resource Supply: Substitution Effect, Compensation Effect, and All That," CIRANO Working Papers 2012s-28, CIRANO.
  5. Hart, Rob, 2004. "Growth, environment and innovation--a model with production vintages and environmentally oriented research," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 48(3), pages 1078-1098, November.
  6. Acemoglu, D., 1997. "Why Do New Technologies Complement Skills? Directed Technical Change and Wage Inequality," Working papers 97-14, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  7. Daron Acemoglu & Philippe Aghion & Leonardo Bursztyn & David Hemous, 2012. "The Environment and Directed Technical Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 131-66, February.
  8. Rick van der Ploeg & Cees Withagen, 2010. "Is There Really a Green Paradox?," OxCarre Working Papers 035, Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford.
  9. Gaudet, Gérard & Lasserre, Pierre, 1990. "Dynamiques comparées des effets de la taxation minière," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 66(4), pages 467-497, décembre.
  10. GRIMAUD Andre & LAFFORGUE Gilles & MAGNE Bertrand, 2009. "Climate change mitigation options and directed technical change: A decentralized equilibrium analysis," LERNA Working Papers 09.20.296, LERNA, University of Toulouse.
  11. Robert J. Barro, 2013. "Inflation and Economic Growth," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 14(1), pages 121-144, May.
  12. Sinn, Hans-Werner, 2008. "Public policies against global warming: A supply side approach," Munich Reprints in Economics 19638, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  13. Philippe Aghion & Antoine Dechezleprêtre & David Hemous & Ralf Martin & John Van Reenen, 2012. "Carbon Taxes, Path Dependency and Directed Technical Change: Evidence from the Auto Industry," CEP Discussion Papers dp1178, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  14. Joshua S. Gans, 2012. "Innovation and Climate Change Policy," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 4(4), pages 125-45, November.
  15. Quentin Grafton, R. & Kompas, Tom & Van Long, Ngo, 2012. "Substitution between biofuels and fossil fuels: Is there a green paradox?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 64(3), pages 328-341.
  16. Grimaud, André & Rougé, Luc, 2007. "Environment, Directed Technical Change and Economic Policy," IDEI Working Papers 384, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  17. Di Maria, Corrado & Valente, Simone, 2006. "The Direction of Technical Change in Capital-Resource Economies," MPRA Paper 1040, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  18. Reyer Gerlagh, 2011. "Too Much Oil," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 57(1), pages 79-102, March.
  19. Sjak Smulders & Corrado Di Maria, 2012. "The Cost of Environmental Policy under Induced Technical Change," CESifo Working Paper Series 3886, CESifo Group Munich.
  20. Withagen, Cees, 1994. "Pollution and exhaustibility of fossil fuels," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 235-242, August.
  21. anonymous, 1995. "Does the bouncing ball lead to economic growth?," Regional Update, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, issue Jul, pages 1-2, 4-6.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:tse:wpaper:26215. 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 you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.