By Karl-Goran Maler, Jeffrey R. Vincent
The various frontiers of environmental economics learn are on the interface of large-scale and long term environmental swap with nationwide and worldwide monetary structures. this is often additionally the place the most of tough environmental coverage concerns ensue. quantity three of the instruction manual of Environmental Economics presents a synthesis of the most recent conception on economywide and overseas environmental concerns and a severe evaluate of versions for interpreting these concerns. It starts with chapters at the primary relationships that attach environmental assets to monetary progress and long-run social welfare. the next chapters think about how environmental coverage differs in a general-equiIibrium surroundings from a partial-equilibrium environment and in a distorted economic climate from an ideal economic climate. the quantity closes with chapters on environmental matters that move or go beyond nationwide borders, resembling alternate and the surroundings, biodiversity conservation, acid rain, ozone depletion, and worldwide weather switch. the amount presents an invaluable reference for not just usual source and environmental economists but additionally overseas economists, improvement economists, and macroeconomists
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Additional info for Economywide and International Environmental Issues
That (c/c) < 0, then the consumption discount rate may be negative, so that the weight given to a increment of consumption actually rises over time (a point also emphasized by Dasgupta, Mäler and Barrett). In fact, if an economy is following an optimal path in the utilitarian sense, then the first-order conditions for optimality give us further information about the consumption discount rate. One obvious and general proposition is the following. If the utility function has an elasticity of the marginal utility of consumption which is bounded, and if the utilitarian optimal path tends in the limit to a stationary solution, then at this stationary solution the consumption discount rate is equal to the utility discount rate.
Furthermore, the fact that the consumption discount rate is zero, does not imply any degree of intergenerational equity, as the Hotelling example shows clearly. So having a zero consumption discount rate is not a solution to the ethical problem that led Ramsey and Harrod to decry the discounting of future utilities. In principle we could define and measure the consumption discount rate along a path which is not a utilitarian optimum: we could consider the impact on a discounted utility sum of marginal variations about any reference time path of consumption.
See Heal (1998). Figure 6 shows the behavior of an optimal path in this case. Intuitively, one can see what drives this result. The non-existence of an optimal path with a constant discount rate arose from a conflict between the long-run behavior of the path that maximizes the integral of discounted utilities, and that of the path that maximizes the long-run utility level. When the discount rate goes to zero in the limit, that conflict is resolved. In fact, one can show that it is resolved only in this case.
Economywide and International Environmental Issues by Karl-Goran Maler, Jeffrey R. Vincent