Environmental Compliance Cost and Productivity Growth in US Manufacturing

23 Pages Posted: 15 Jul 2018

See all articles by Abbas Taheri

Abbas Taheri

University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh

Rodney Stevenson

Wisconsin School of Business

Date Written: July 13, 2018


The decade of 1970s is generally known for its dramatic increases in the price of oil. What is less known, however, is the fact that U.S. industrial sector experienced a significant slow down in productivity growth during the 1970s and 1980s. While many studies have analyzed the economic impact of higher energy prices on industry, the research on productivity slow down has been rather slow. The task of unraveling the cause of this productivity mystery is further complicated by the fact that this period also marks the beginning of an era of unprecedented environmental controls as Congress passed a series of sweeping amendments to the Clean Air Act (CAA) law in the 1970s and again in 1990. As a result of these amendments to the CAA the U.S. industry was faced with mounting environmental compliance cost. While environmental regulations are generally believed to impair productivity few studies have considered environmental regulation.

Suggested Citation

Taheri, Abbas and Stevenson, Rodney E., Environmental Compliance Cost and Productivity Growth in US Manufacturing (July 13, 2018). USAEE Working Paper No. 18-350, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3213317 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3213317

Abbas Taheri (Contact Author)

University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh ( email )

800 Algoma Blvd
Oshkosh, WI WI 54901
United States

Rodney E. Stevenson

Wisconsin School of Business ( email )

975 University Avenue
Madison, WI 53706
United States
(608) 284-0175 (Phone)

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