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Household Welfare and CO2 Emission Impacts of Energy and Carbon Taxes in Mexico

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  • Renner, Sebastian
  • Lay, Jann
  • Greve, Hannes

Abstract

We analyse the effects of environmental taxes on welfare and carbon emissions at the household level for the case of Mexico. The integrated welfare-environmental analysis, which is based on a censored energy consumer demand system, extends previous work in two ways. First, the estimation of a full matrix of substitution elasticities allows us to test the necessity of incorporating second-order effects into the welfare analysis. Second, the substitution elasticities derived from the demand system are used to estimate the shortrun CO2 emission-reduction potential. We find that first-order approximations of welfare effects provide reasonable estimates, particularly for carbon taxes. Analog to evidence in other low- and middle-income countries, the taxation of all energy items is found to be regressive, with the exception of motor fuels. The inclusion of CH4 and N2O in a carbon tax regime comes with particularly regressive impacts because of its strong effects on food prices. The analysis of the emission implications of different tax scenarios indicates that short-run emission reductions at the household level can be substantial - though the effects depend on how revenue is recycled. This effectiveness combined with moderate and manageable adverse distributional impacts renders the carbon tax a preferred mitigation instrument. Considering the large effect of food price increases on poverty and the limited additional emission-saving potential, the inclusion of CH4 and N2O in a carbon tax regime is not advisable.

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  • Renner, Sebastian & Lay, Jann & Greve, Hannes, 2017. "Household Welfare and CO2 Emission Impacts of Energy and Carbon Taxes in Mexico," GIGA Working Papers 301, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:gigawp:301
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    6. Umed Temursho & Matthias Weitzel & Toon Vandyck, 2020. "Distributional impacts of reaching ambitious near-term climate targets across households with heterogeneous consumption patterns: A quantitative macro-micro assessment for the 2030 Climate Target Plan," JRC Research Reports JRC121765, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
    7. Paula Pereda & Maria Alice Christofoletti, 2019. "Heterogeneous welfare and emission effects of energy tax policies in Brazil," Working Papers, Department of Economics 2019_32, University of São Paulo (FEA-USP).
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    11. José M. Labeaga & Xavier Labandeira & Xiral López-Otero, 2018. "Energy Tax Reform and Poverty Alleviation in Mexico," Working Papers 1801, Universidade de Vigo, Departamento de Economía Aplicada.
    12. Biondi, Beatrice & Cornelsen, Laura & Mazzocchi, Mario & Smith, Richard, 2020. "Between preferences and references: Asymmetric price elasticities and the simulation of fiscal policies," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 180(C), pages 108-128.
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    16. Tovar Reaños, Miguel A. & Lynch, Muireann Á., 2022. "Measuring carbon tax incidence using a fully flexible demand system. Vertical and horizontal effects using Irish data," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 160(C).
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    climate policy; energy policy; Mexico; poverty; distributional effects;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household
    • Q40 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - General
    • Q52 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Pollution Control Adoption and Costs; Distributional Effects; Employment Effects
    • 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
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • C54 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Quantitative Policy Modeling

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