Pollution & Economic Growth

Topics: Non-parametric statistics, Regression analysis, Air pollution Pages: 444 (47271 words) Published: December 6, 2013
Economic Growth and Air Pollution: Three Empirical Essays Based on Nonparametric Methods

Thèse présentée à la Faculté des sciences économiques
Université de Neuchâtel

Pour l’obtention du grade de docteur ès science économiques

Par
Carlos Ordás Criado

Acceptée sur proposition du jury de thèse:
Prof. Jean-Marie Grether, Université de Neuchâtel, directeur de thèse. Prof. Jaime de Melo, Université de Genève, co-directeur de thèse Prof. Thanasis Stengos, University of Guelph
Prof. Philippe Thalmann, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne Prof. Milad Zarin-Nejadan, Université de Neuchâtel, président du jury

Soutenue le 9 mars 2009

Neuchâtel, 2009

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Les propos et opinions exprimés dans ce document n’engagent que son auteur et en aucune manière la Faculté des Sciences Économiques de l’Université de Neuchâtel.

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English abstract
Abstract: this dissertation includes 3 research papers, which explore empirically the link between the level of economic activity and air pollution at the macroeconomic level. A special emphasis is given to the application of recent tools developed in the nonparametric field as they allow for a better control of potential misspecification biases and they give more flexibility to the underlying relationships. Chapter 1 tests whether a sustainable link between per capita GDP levels and the environment exists for a variety of air pollutants’ emissions in a panel of 48 Spanish provinces over the period 1990-2002. Chapter 2 investigates how cross-country gaps in per capita CO2 emissions evolved over the 1960-2002 period for a panel of 166 world areas as well as for several country sub-groupings (rich/poor countries, specific geographic regions, economically integrated areas). An analysis of the dynamic of the cross-sectional distributions is conducted with robust scale and shape measures and formal shape and multimodality tests are applied. The latter approach is contrasted with a stochastic convergence analysis à la Evans (1998). Chapter 3 makes use of a broad range of regression techniques to fit a reduced form function, where growth rates in per capita CO2 emissions are explained with past pollution levels, past per capita GDP levels and per capita GDP growth rates. Panel models are estimated with standard linear and nonlinear least squares and these specifications are tested against their nonparametric counterpart. This framework also allows exploring beta-convergence in per capita emissions conditional on GDP as well as beta-convergence in GDP conditional on pollution.

Keywords: Air pollution, carbon dioxide emissions, Environmental Kuznets Curve, convergence, distributional dynamics, mixed nonparametric and semiparametric regressions, panel poolability test, unit roots.

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Résumé en français
Résumé : cette thèse se compose de 3 recherches dont l’objectif est l’étude empirique du lien entre croissance économique et pollution atmosphérique au niveau macroéconomique. Elle privilégie l’utilisation d’outils récents issus de l’analyse nonparamétrique car ils permettent une meilleure prise en compte de biais de mauvaise spécification et introduisent plus de flexibilité dans la forme fonctionnelle étudiée. Le premier chapitre vérifie l’existence d’une relation soutenable entre le niveau de PIB par tête et l’environnement dans 48 provinces espagnoles pour différents polluants de l’air durant les années 1990-2002. Le second chapitre s’intéresse à l’évolution des différences de niveau d’émissions de CO2 par tête entre 1960 et 2002 dans 166 pays, ainsi que dans divers sous-ensembles de pays (riches/pauvres, appartenant à une même zone géographique, membres d’une zone d’intégration régionale. . . ). La dynamique des distributions transversales est étudiée à l’aide de mesures robustes d’échelle et de forme fonctionnelle. Des tests d’égalité distributionnelle et de multi-modalité sont également appliqués pour tester la stationnarité des densités et l’émergence de différents...

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