GLOBAL ENERGY SUBSIDIES: AN ANALYTICAL TAXONOMY
There was a debate earlier this year in the pages of the Financial Times regarding the size and extent of global energy subsidies. It was suggested to me that I send a letter in myself, but upon looking at the issue I found it too large and complex to be reducible to a letter. Different authors and institutions have estimated subsidy magnitudes that vary by orders of magnitude even within countries. Why do the numbers vary so much? The reason is that the definitions being applied vary widely, and some of the definitions make no sense. In this paper:
UPDATE: The paper has been published in the journal Energy Policy:
TRADE LIBERALIZATION AND POLLUTION HAVENS
Bin Hu and I published a study looking at whether the distribution of consumption-generated pollution changes in a different way than production-generated pollution between rich and poor countries under trade liberalization. Previous work has focused on production-generated ("smokestack") emissions rather than consumption-generated ("tailpipe") emissions, and finds pollution intensity tends to rise in rich countries relative to poor countries after trade liberalization. We present a theoretical model in which the opposite pattern is predicted for tailpipe emissions, and we find empirical support for this in an international panel of data on carbon monoxide emissions.
Contact me if you want reprints of any of these. For my textbook go here.
THE PRINCIPLE OF TARGETING
I published a brief essay through the Fraser Institute called
ENVIRONMENT AND INEQUALITY:
I made an invited presentation to the CIGI conference "False Dichotomies" (Nov 16-17 2012) in a session on the theme of Environment and Inequality. My argument was that there is a kind of Environmental Kuznets Curve connecting social equity and the stringency of environmental policy. In heavily polluted economies, increased stringency and enforcement of regulation generates a mix of benefits and costs that benefit overall equity. But in modern, high income economies with low pollution levels, like Canada and the US, environmental policy overkill is becoming a means by which wealthy urban households derive warm glow benefits while passing the costs disproportionately onto low-income and rural households. My presentation slides are here. The entire session can be viewed online here. Peter Victor speaks first and then I come on at about the 14:00 mark.