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Decoupling: Is there a Separate Contribution from Environmental Taxation

Report
Authors Adrian Muller
Åsa Löfgren
Thomas Sterner
Publisher University of Gothenburg
Place of publication Göteborg
Publication year 2011
Published at Department of Economics, Environmental Economics Unit
Language en
Links hdl.handle.net/2077/24278
Keywords decoupling, environmental taxation, pollution
Subject categories Economics

Abstract

Decoupling is a crucial topic in the analysis of sustainable development. Without decoupling, continuing and increasing economic growth in developed and developing countries would come with ever increasing environmental pressures, unavoidably destroying the carrying capacity of ecosystems with corresponding detrimental effects on the environment and societies. The prime example today is climate change. If we do not succeed in drastically decoupling greenhouse gas emissions from economic growth, the mitigation goals necessary to avoid catastrophic impacts will never be reached. Due to this importance of decoupling, it is thus essential to know how different policy instruments may support its achievement. The aim of this paper is to address the question whether there is a separate contribution from environmental taxation to decoupling and to offer researchers some guidance on how to optimally address this question.

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