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Costly pollution abatement, competitiveness, and plant location decisions

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  • Markusen, James R.

Abstract

This quote contains two separate policy suggestions: (1) Trade barriers insulate production and welfare from any adverse responses to costly environmental restrictions. (2) Banning multinationals would insulate production and welfare from any adverse effects of costly environmental restrictions. This paper adapts an oligopoly model, in which multinationals (multi-plant firms) can arise endogenously, to examine this position. This paper finds that: (1) Trade barriers insulate production but not welfare from adverse effects of costly environmental restrictions. (2) Banning multinationals does not insulate production and welfare from any adverse effects of these restrictions or regulations. On the contrary, multinationals appear to smooth production effects, but this is because multinationals arise in equilibrium when trade costs are high. In addition, the paper finds that the form taken by cost increases is crucial: restrictions that fall on fixed costs (e.g., more efficient burners and motors) have much smaller effects on production and welfare than restrictions that fall on marginal costs (e.g., cleaner fuels).

Suggested Citation

  • Markusen, James R., 1995. "Costly pollution abatement, competitiveness, and plant location decisions," Discussion Papers, Series II 260, University of Konstanz, Collaborative Research Centre (SFB) 178 "Internationalization of the Economy".
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:kondp2:260
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. James R. Markusen, 2004. "Multinational Firms and the Theory of International Trade," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262633078, January.
    2. Markusen, James R. & Morey, Edward R. & Olewiler, Nancy, 1995. "Competition in regional environmental policies when plant locations are endogenous," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 55-77, January.
    3. Michael Rauscher, 1995. "Environmental regulation and the location of polluting industries," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 2(2), pages 229-244, August.
    4. Rauscher, Michael, 1994. "Environmental regulation and the location of polluting industries," Kiel Working Papers 639, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    5. Markusen James R. & Morey Edward R. & Olewiler Nancy D., 1993. "Environmental Policy when Market Structure and Plant Locations Are Endogenous," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 69-86, January.
    6. Markusen, James R. & Rutherford, Thomas F. & Hunter, Linda, 1995. "Trade liberalization in a multinational-dominated industry," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(1-2), pages 95-117, February.
    7. Markusen, James R. & Venables, Anthony J., 1998. "Multinational firms and the new trade theory," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, pages 183-203.
    8. Rauscher, Michael, 1994. "Environmental Regulation and the Location of Polluting Industries," CEPR Discussion Papers 1032, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Venables, Anthony J., 1985. "Trade and trade policy with imperfect competition: The case of identical products and free entry," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(1-2), pages 1-19, August.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • Q20 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - General

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