Pollution, Factor Taxation and Unemployment
International Tax and Public Finance, Vol. 5, Issue 3, 1998
Posted: 14 Apr 1998
When consumers choose between clean and dirty goods and the labor market clears, a green tax reform may not bring about a double dividend in the sense of increasing environmental quality and increasing employment. However, when firms choose between clean and dirty factors of production, and when there is unemployment, such a result is very likely to occur. The paper investigates a model of a monopolistic firm where labor and energy are factors of production and trade unions negotiate the wage rate, accepting some unemployment as a result of aggressive wage demands. It is shown that, in such a framework, a green tax reform will boost employment provided it does not increase the net-of-tax wage rate by too much. This is the case when the elasticity of substitution between labor and energy is greater than one, equal to one or not too far below one.
JEL Classification: H20, J51
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation