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Economic Activity and the Greenhouse Effect

Yoshiki Ogawa

Year: 1991
Volume: Volume 12
Number: Number 1
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol12-No1-3
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Global warming is recognized as one of the most important issues in international politics, although specialists are still uncertain about the role which various socio-economic factors play in global warming under a variety of conditions. Among the factors examined in this paper, the burning of fossil fuels bears the greatest responsibility for global CO2 emissions. Given the growth in emissions in the LDCs, global action to regulate emissions cannot be effective without their full participation and therefore north-south problems need to be addressed simultaneously, or before, the problem of global warming. The problem of global warming is becoming ever more urgent as energy demand has begun to increase again following the collapse of oil prices in 1986.

Changes in Energy Intensity in Canada

Saeed Moshiri and Nana Duah

Year: 2016
Volume: Volume 37
Number: Number 4
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.37.4.smos
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Canada is one of the top energy users and CO2 emitters among the OECD countries. However, energy intensity has been declining, on average, by about 1.4 percent since 1980. In this paper, we use the Fisher Ideal Index to determine the contribution of changes in the composition of economic activities and efficiency to a decline in energy intensity in Canada at national, provincial, and industry levels. We also apply panel data estimation methods to further investigate the factors driving energy intensity, efficiency and activity indexes for the period 1981-2008. We test for endogeneity as well as cross-section dependency in the provincial data and control for factors such as climate, policy, and energy endowment. The national and provincial decomposition results suggest that most of the reduction in energy intensity has occurred mainly due to improvements in energy efficiency rather than shifts in economic activities. Within the industry, while energy intensity has declined significantly in manufacturing, it has remained stable in transportation, utilities, and construction, and increased significantly in oil extraction and mining industries. The provincial panel regression results indicate that energy intensity is higher in provinces with higher average incomes, faster population growth, colder climate, and a higher capital-labour ratio, and lower in provinces with higher energy prices and higher investment. The industry panel regression results show that investment has contributed to energy efficiency in utilities and mining and to a shift away from energy-intensive activities in manufacturing and transportation industries. Technological advances have been most effective in increasing energy efficiency in construction and utilities and in decreasing energy-intensive activities in manufacturing industries. The results indicate that although efficiency contributes to a reduction in energy intensity in Canada, increasing activity in energy-intensive industries, such as oil and mining, partially offsets the efficiency gains in other industries.

Firms and Households during the Pandemic: What Do We Learn from Their Electricity Consumption?

Olympia Bover, Natalia Fabra, Sandra García-Uribe, Aitor Lacuesta, and Roberto Ramos

Year: 2023
Volume: Volume 44
Number: Number 3
DOI: 10.5547/01956574.44.2.obov
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We analyze the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on electricity consumption patterns. We highlight the importance of decomposing total electricity consumption into consumption by firms and by households to better understand the economic and social impacts of the crisis. While electricity demand by firms has fallen substantially, the demand by households has gone up. In particular, our focus is on Spain where, during the total lockdown, these effects reached –29% and +10% respectively, controlling for temperature and seasonality. While the electricity demand reductions during the second wave were milder, the demand by firms remained 5% below its normal levels. We also document a change in people’s daily routines in response to the stringency of the lockdown measures, as reflected in their hourly electricity consumption patterns.

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