PRESS-NEWS.org - Press Release Distribution
FREE PRESS RELEASES DISTRIBUTION

Environmental policies not always bad for business, study finds

2021-02-23
(Press-News.org) ITHACA, N.Y. - Critics claim environmental regulations hurt productivity and profits, but the reality is more nuanced, according to an analysis of environmental policies in China by a pair of Cornell economists. The analysis found that, contrary to conventional wisdom, market-based or incentive-based policies may actually benefit regulated firms in the traditional and "green" energy sectors, by spurring innovation and improvements in production processes. Policies that mandate environmental standards and technologies, on the other hand, may broadly harm output and profits. "The conventional wisdom is not entirely accurate," said Shuyang Si, a doctoral student in applied economics and management. "The type of policy matters, and policy effects vary by firm, industry and sector." Si is the lead author of "The Effects of Environmental Policies in China on GDP, Output, and Profits," published in the current issue of the journal Energy Economics. C.-Y. Cynthia Lin Lawell, associate professor in the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management and the Robert Dyson Sesquicentennial Chair in Environmental, Energy and Resource Economics, is a co-author. Si mined Chinese provincial government websites and other online sources to compile a comprehensive data set of nearly 2,700 environmental laws and regulations in effect in at least one of 30 provinces between 2002 and 2013. This period came just before China declared a "war on pollution," instituting major regulatory changes that shifted its longtime prioritization of economic growth over environmental concerns. "We really looked deep into the policies and carefully examined their features and provisions," Si said. The researchers categorized each policy as one of four types: "command and control," such as mandates to use a portion of electricity from renewable sources; financial incentives, including taxes, subsidies and loans; monetary awards for cutting pollution or improving efficiency and technology; and nonmonetary awards, such as public recognition. They assessed how each type of policy impacted China's gross domestic product, industrial output in traditional energy industries and the profits of new energy sector companies, using publicly available data on economic indicators and publicly traded companies. Command and control policies and nonmonetary award policies had significant negative effects on GDP, output and profits, Si and Lin Lawell concluded. But a financial incentive - loans for increasing renewable energy consumption - improved industrial output in the petroleum and nuclear energy industries, and monetary awards for reducing pollution boosted new energy sector profits. "Environmental policies do not necessarily lead to a decrease in output or profits," the researchers wrote. That finding, they said, is consistent with the "Porter hypothesis" - Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter's 1991 proposal that environmental policies could stimulate growth and development, by spurring technology and business innovation to reduce both pollution and costs. While certain policies benefitted regulated firms and industries, the study found that those benefits came at a cost to other sectors and to the overall economy. Nevertheless, Si and Lin Lawell said, these costs should be weighed against the benefits of these policies to the environment and society, and to the regulated firms and industries. Economists generally prefer market-based or incentive-based environmental policies, Lin Lawell said, with a carbon tax or tradeable permit system representing the gold standard. The new study led by Si, she said, provides more support for those types of policies. "This work will make people aware, including firms that may be opposed to environmental regulation, that it's not necessarily the case that these regulations will be harmful to their profits and productivity," Lin Lawell said. "In fact, if policies promoting environmental protection are designed carefully, there are some that these firms might actually like."

INFORMATION:

Additional co-authors contributing to the study were Mingjie Lyu of Shanghai Lixin University of Accounting and Finance, and Song Chen of Tongji University. The authors acknowledged financial support from the Shanghai Science and Technology Development Fund and an Exxon-Mobil ITS-Davis Corporate Affiliate Fellowship.



ELSE PRESS RELEASES FROM THIS DATE:

Polymer film protects from electromagnetic radiation, signal interference

Polymer film protects from electromagnetic radiation, signal interference
2021-02-22
As electronic devices saturate all corners of public and personal life, engineers are scrambling to find lightweight, mechanically stable, flexible, and easily manufactured materials that can shield humans from excessive electromagnetic radiation as well as prevent electronic devices from interfering with each other. In a breakthrough report published in Advanced Materials--the top journal in the field-- engineers at the University of California, Riverside describe a flexible film using a quasi-one-dimensional nanomaterial filler that combines excellent electromagnetic shielding with ease of manufacture. "These novel films are promising for high-frequency communication technologies, which require electromagnetic ...

Texas A&M-UTMB team identifies potential drug to treat SARS-CoV-2

2021-02-22
A federally approved heart medication shows significant effectiveness in interfering with SARS-CoV-2 entry into the human cell host, according to a new study by a research team from Texas A&M University and The University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB). The medication bepridil, which goes by the trade name Vascor, is currently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat angina, a heart condition. The team's leaders are College of Science professor Wenshe Ray Liu, professor and holder of the Gradipore Chair in the Department of Chemistry at Texas A&M, and Chien-Te Kent Tseng, professor ...

OU research delineates the impacts of climate warming on microbial network interactions

2021-02-22
Climate change impacts are broad and far reaching. A new study by University of Oklahoma researchers from the Institute for Environmental Genomics explores the impacts of climate warming on microbial network complexity and stability, providing critical insights to ecosystem management and for projecting ecological consequences of future climate warming. "Global climate change is one of the most profound anthropogenic disturbances to our planet," said Jizhong Zhou, IEG's director, a George Lynn Cross Research Professor in the College of Arts and Sciences and an adjunct professor in the Gallogly College of Engineering. "Climate warming can alter soil microbial community diversity, structure and activities, but it remains uncertain whether and how it impacts network complexity and its relationships ...

Depressed and out of work? Therapy may help you find a job

2021-02-22
COLUMBUS, Ohio - If depression is making it more difficult for some unemployed people to land a job, one type of therapy may help, research suggests. In a new study, 41% of unemployed or underemployed people undergoing cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) found a new job or went from part- to full-time work by the end of the 16-week treatment for depression. Those who had a job but found it difficult to focus on and accomplish work tasks because of depression said the treatment helped to significantly reduce these problems. "For the most part, researchers have focused on showing ...

How outdoor pollution affects indoor air quality

How outdoor pollution affects indoor air quality
2021-02-22
Just when you thought you could head indoors to be safe from the air pollution that plagues the Salt Lake Valley, new research shows that elevated air pollution events, like horror movie villains, claw their way into indoor spaces. The research, conducted in conjunction with the Utah Division of Facilities Construction and Management, is published in Science of the Total Environment. In a long-term study in a Salt Lake-area building, researchers found that the amount of air pollution that comes indoors depends on the type of outdoor pollution. Wildfires, fireworks and wintertime inversions all affect indoor air to different degrees, ...

Researchers learn that pregnant women pass along protective COVID antibodies to their babies

2021-02-22
Researchers Learn that Pregnant Women Pass Along Protective COVID Antibodies to their Babies Antibodies that guard against COVID-19 can transfer from mothers to babies while in the womb, according to a new study from Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian researchers published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. This discovery, published Jan. 22, adds to growing evidence that suggests that pregnant women who generate protective antibodies after contracting the coronavirus often convey some of that natural immunity to their fetuses. The findings also lend support to the idea that vaccinating mothers-to-be may also have benefits for their newborns. "Since we can now say that the antibodies pregnant women make against COVID-19 ...

Graphene Oxide membranes could reduce paper industry energy costs

Graphene Oxide membranes could reduce paper industry energy costs
2021-02-22
The U.S. pulp and paper industry uses large quantities of water to produce cellulose pulp from trees. The water leaving the pulping process contains a number of organic byproducts and inorganic chemicals. To reuse the water and the chemicals, paper mills rely on steam-fed evaporators that boil up the water and separate it from the chemicals. Water separation by evaporators is effective but uses large amounts of energy. That's significant given that the United States currently is the world's second-largest producer of paper and paperboard. The country's approximately 100 paper mills are estimated to use about 0.2 quads (a quad is a quadrillion BTUs) of energy per year for water recycling, making it one of the most energy-intensive chemical processes. All industrial ...

Big galaxies steal star-forming gas from their smaller neighbours

Big galaxies steal star-forming gas from their smaller neighbours
2021-02-22
Large galaxies are known to strip the gas that occupies the space between the stars of smaller satellite galaxies. In research published today, astronomers have discovered that these small satellite galaxies also contain less 'molecular' gas at their centres. Molecular gas is found in giant clouds in the centres of galaxies and is the building material for new stars. Large galaxies are therefore stealing the material that their smaller counterparts need to form new stars. Lead author Dr Adam Stevens is an astrophysicist based at UWA working for the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) and affiliated to the ARC Centre of Excellence in All Sky Astrophysics in 3 Dimensions (ASTRO 3D). Dr Stevens ...

Study: Effects of past ice ages more widespread than previously thought

Study: Effects of past ice ages more widespread than previously thought
2021-02-22
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - Cold temperatures, prevalent during glacial periods, had a significant impact on past and modern unglaciated landscapes across much of North America, according to a recent study by University of Arkansas geologist Jill A. Marshall. Marshall, assistant professor of geosciences, is the first author of the study, published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. The findings help shape understanding of the earth's "Critical Zone," the relatively thin layer of the planet that extends from where vegetation meets the atmosphere to the lowermost extent of weathered bedrock. "Climate and ecosystems determine how quickly bedrock ...

Three longtime antibiotics could offer alternative to addictive opioid pain relievers

Three longtime antibiotics could offer alternative to addictive opioid pain relievers
2021-02-22
DALLAS - Feb. 22, 2021 - Three decades-old antibiotics administered together can block a type of pain triggered by nerve damage in an animal model, UT Southwestern researchers report. The finding, published online today in PNAS, could offer an alternative to opioid-based painkillers, addictive prescription medications that are responsible for an epidemic of abuse in the U.S. Over 100 million Americans are affected by chronic pain, and a quarter of these experience pain on a daily basis, a burden that costs an estimated $600 billion in lost wages and medical expenses ...

LAST 30 PRESS RELEASES:

Exercise aids the cognitive development of children born preterm

Achieving high COVID-19 vaccine coverage levels by summer can prevent millions of cases

Many consumers misinterpret food date labels, yet use them with confidence

Open source tool can help identify gerrymandering in voting maps

First member of ill-fated 1845 Franklin expedition is identified by DNA analysis

We need to build more EV fast-charging stations, researchers say

Fear of losing health insurance keeps 1 in 6 workers in their jobs

Breathing problems are the second most common symptom of heart attacks

Study sheds more light on rate of rare blood clots after Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine

Danish-Norwegian study on adverse reactions after AstraZeneca vaccination is now published

Is PTSD overdiagnosed?

ICU admission linked to increased risk of future suicide and self-harm

The Lancet: First nation-wide data shows two doses of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine highly effective against COVID-19 infection, hospitalisation, and death

Promising malaria vaccine enters final stage of clinical testing in West Africa

New mutation raises risk for AFib, heart failure for people of color

340B hospitals offer more assistance removing barriers to medication access

Large study links dementia to poor kidney function

Gender pay gaps in nonprofits are even greater when there is room for salary negotiations

The last battle of Anne of Brittany: isotopic study of the soldiers of 1491

Countries denied access to medicines and vaccines they help develop

UIC researcher finds possible novel migraine therapy

New method identifies tau aggregates occurring in healthy body structures

Scientists find a new anti-hepatic fibrosis drug target

Antarctica remains the wild card for sea-level rise estimates through 2100

Ice core chemistry study expands insight into sea ice variability in Southern Hemisphere

Nanoscope presents novel gene delivery and electrophysiology platforms at ARVO

Expanded contraception access led to higher graduation rates for young women in Colorado

Strange isotopes: Scientists explain a methane isotope paradox of the seafloor

How accurate were early expert predictions on COVID-19, and how did they compare to the public?

Greater access to birth control leads to higher graduation rates

[Press-News.org] Environmental policies not always bad for business, study finds