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Environmental Kuznets Curve – A Tie between Environmental Quality and Economic Prosperity


Economics

Environmental Kuznets Curve – A Tie between Environmental Quality and Economic Prosperity

Name and surname of author:

Jiří Mazurek

Year:
2011
Issue:
4
Keywords:
economic growth, Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC), pollution
DOI (& full text):
Anotation:
The goal of the article is an introduction of Environmental Kuznets Curve as a concept, discussion of its existence arising from empirical research for different pollutants and its theoretical…more
The goal of the article is an introduction of Environmental Kuznets Curve as a concept, discussion of its existence arising from empirical research for different pollutants and its theoretical explanation. The article includes own EKC research result concerning particulate matter in the air. Economic growth, measured as GDP per capita in a given country, is connected with increasing pollution, but after some turning point pollution starts declining. This relationship has an inverted U-shape and is called Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC). EKC was first identified in a research by Grossman and Krueger from 1991 [8], other studies came after soon. In the air pollution EKC was identified for SO2, NOx a dark matter (smoke), in water pollution for biological oxygen demand, chemical oxygen demand, nitrates and some heavy metals (such as arsenic, cadmium or lead). EKC evidence for particulate matter (PM) is mixed, EKC wasn´t found for CO or CO2. However,some authors consider evidence for EKC statistically weak. Standard explanation of EKC comes from [17]: „As the development and industrailization progress, environmental damage increases due to greater use of natural resources, more emissions of pollutants, the operation of less efficient and relatively dirty technologies, the high priority given to increase in material output, and disregardfor – or ignorance of – the environmental consequences of growth. However, as economic growth continues and life expectancies increase, claner water, improved air quality, and a generally cleaner habitat become more valuable…” EKC research has important policy implications: from some point environmental quality improves with ecomic growth. Hence efforts to reduce economic growth to protect nvironment have in fact the opposite effect...
Section:
Economics

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