The Political Economy of Green Growth: Illustrations from Southern Africa
The concept of .green growth. implies that a wide range of developmental objectives, such as job creation, economic prosperity and poverty alleviation, can be easily reconciled with environmental sustainability. This study, however, argues that rather than being win-win, green growth is similar to most types of policy reforms that advocate the acceptance of short-term adjustment costs in the expectation of long-term gains. In particular, green growth policies often encourage developing countries to redesign their national strategies in ways that might be inconsistent with natural comparative advantages and past investments. In turn, there are often sizeable anti-reform coalitions whose interests may conflict with a green growth agenda. We illustrate this argument using case studies of Malawi, Mozambique, and South Africa, which are engaged in development strategies that involve inorganic fertilizers, biofuels production, and coal-based energy, respectively. Each of these countries is pursuing an environmentally suboptimal strategy but nonetheless addressing critical development needs, including food security, fuel, and electricity. We show that adopting a green growth approach would not only be economically costly but also generate substantial domestic resistance, especially amongst the poor.
|Date of creation:||2012|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Katajanokanlaituri 6B, 00160 Helsinki|
Web page: http://www.wider.unu.edu/
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.:
- Channing Arndt & Kenneth R. Simler, 2007. "Consistent poverty comparisons and inference," Agricultural Economics, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 37(2-3), pages 133-139, 09.
- Hallegatte, Stephane & Heal, Geoffrey & Fay, Marianne & Treguer, David, 2011.
"From growth to green growth -- a framework,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
5872, The World Bank.
- Arndt, Channing & Benfica, Rui & Tarp, Finn & Thurlow, James & Uaiene, Rafael, 2008.
"Biofuels, poverty, and growth: A computable general equilibrium analysis of Mozambique,"
IFPRI discussion papers
803, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- Arndt, Channing & Benfica, Rui & Tarp, Finn & Thurlow, James & Uaiene, Rafael, 2010. "Biofuels, poverty, and growth: a computable general equilibrium analysis of Mozambique," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 15(01), pages 81-105, February.
- Arndt, Channing & Benfica, Rui M.S. & Tarp, Finn & Thurlow, James & Uaiene, Rafael N., 2008. "Biofuels, Poverty, and Growth: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis of Mozambique," 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China 52004, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
- Winkler, Harald, 2005. "Renewable energy policy in South Africa: policy options for renewable electricity," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 27-38, January.
- Davis, Mark, 1998. "Rural household energy consumption : The effects of access to electricity--evidence from South Africa," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 207-217, February.
- Arndt, Channing & Makrelov, Konstantin & Thurlow, James, 2011. "Measuring the Carbon Content of the South African Economy," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Minot, Nicholas & Benson, Todd, 2009. "Fertilizer subsidies in Africa: Are vouchers the answer?," Issue briefs 60, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- Schut, Marc & Slingerland, Maja & Locke, Anna, 2010. "Biofuel developments in Mozambique. Update and analysis of policy, potential and reality," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(9), pages 5151-5165, September.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:unu:wpaper:wp2012-11. 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: (Bruck Tadesse)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.