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The Kindergarten Rule of Sustainable Growth

  • W.A. Brock

    (The University of Wisconsin-Madison)

  • M. Scott Taylor

    (The University of Wisconsin-Madison)

The relationship between economic growth and the environment is not well understood: we have only limited understanding of the basic science involved and very limited data. Because of these difficulties it is especially important to develop a series of relatively simple theoretical models that generate stark predictions. This paper presents one such model where societies implement “the Kindergarten rule of sustainable growth.” Following the Kindergarten rule means implementing zero emission technologies in either finite time or asymptotically. The underlying simplicity of the model allows us to provide new predictions linking the path of environmental quality to pollutant characteristics (stocks vs. flows; toxics vs. irritants) and primitives of the economic system. It also provides a novel Environmental Catch-up Hypothesis.

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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Public Economics with number 0303005.

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Date of creation: 24 Mar 2003
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Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwppe:0303005
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  9. Keeler, Emmett & Spence, Michael & Zeckhauser, Richard, 1972. "The optimal control of pollution," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 19-34, February.
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  12. Stokey, Nancy L, 1998. "Are There Limits to Growth?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(1), pages 1-31, February.
  13. CARSON, RICHARd T. & JEON, YONGIL & McCUBBIN, DONALD R., 1997. "The relationship between air pollution emissions and income: US Data," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(04), pages 433-450, November.
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  17. Lucas, Robert Jr., 1988. "On the mechanics of economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-42, July.
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