Fostering Environment-Efficiency Through Transnational Linkages? Trajectories of CO2 and SO2, 1980-2000

Environment and Planning A, Vol. 40, No. 12, 2008

40 Pages Posted: 16 Oct 2006 Last revised: 17 Feb 2014

See all articles by Richard Perkins

Richard Perkins

London School of Economics - Department of Geography and Environment

Eric Neumayer

London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

Date Written: April 1, 2008

Abstract

Recent optimism about sustainability has centred on the opportunities for improvements in environment-efficiency through the international diffusion of environmentally-beneficial innovations. This paper investigates two claims about the conditions under which countries are most likely to realise these gains. First, "dirtier" economies should improve their environment-efficiency faster, as they adopt environmentally sound technologies and policies similar to those in "cleaner" countries, resulting in catch-up and convergence over time. Second, transnational linkages accelerate the international spread of environmentally-beneficial innovations, and therefore improvements in environment-efficiency. To test these claims, we use econometric techniques to examine the dynamics and determinants of two pollutants, CO2 and SO2, using a panel comprising up to 114 countries over the period 1980-2000. Our empirical findings broadly support both claims. Applying tests of unconditional convergence, we find robust evidence for convergence in levels of CO2 and SO2-efficiency, indicating catch-up by less pollution-efficient economies over time. Similarly, confirming claims about transnational linkages, we find that imports from more pollution-efficient countries and telecommunications connectivity are associated with faster improvements in domestic CO2 and SO2-efficiency. Results also suggest that inward FDI stock is positively associated with CO2-efficiency. Yet we find that exports to countries with high levels of pollution-efficiency have no discernable effect on domestic pollution-efficiency.

Suggested Citation

Perkins, Richard and Neumayer, Eric, Fostering Environment-Efficiency Through Transnational Linkages? Trajectories of CO2 and SO2, 1980-2000 (April 1, 2008). Environment and Planning A, Vol. 40, No. 12, 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=937690

Richard Perkins (Contact Author)

London School of Economics - Department of Geography and Environment ( email )

Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

Eric Neumayer

London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) ( email )

Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom
+44 207 955 7598 (Phone)
+44 207 955 7412 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://personal.lse.ac.uk/neumayer

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
125
Abstract Views
951
rank
228,022
PlumX Metrics