The Green Economy: An Irish Perspective John FitzGeraldThe Economic and Social research Institute www.esri.ie
Introduction Environmental economics research EPA supported Irish environmental priorities Water, Other Pollutants, etc. Climate Change Decarbonising? Agriculture? Green Economy Value for money
Water Priorities since 1990? Urban waste water directive etc. Delivering a clean supply of water efficiently Water utility – to cut costs Water utility – to deliver investment Water utility – to improve state’s balance sheet Water utility – to manage funding
Environmental Priorities Many objectives Managing priorities Sustainable living Commuting and spatial patterns STRIVE research Sulphur dioxide etc. A success Health implications?
Commuting Household Car Emissions CO2 Source: Census - POWCARS Car CO2 0.09 - 0.12 Commuting 0.13 - 0.42 0.00 - 0.05 0.43 - 13.87 0.06 - 0.08ESRI: ISUS model
SO2 emissions, historical and projected 200 200 Residential 180 180 Transport Services 160 160 Construction Fuel, power, water 140 140 Other manufacturing Tranport equipment 120 120 Electrical goods Office equipment 000 t SO2 Machinery 100 100 Metal production Mineral production 80 80 Rubber & plastic Chemicals 60 60 Pulp & paper Target Wood 40 40 Textiles Food Mining 20 20 Agriculture 0 0 1990 1995 2000 2005 2010 2015 2020 2025 2030ESRI: ISUS model
Climate Change Europe is burdened by debt Successful policy needs competitive solutions Uncertainty for investors if policy not credible Problems with uncoordinated national policies Global solutions needed Ireland decarbonising by shift to services in output Ireland decarbonising by importing dirty consumption Problem of agriculture
Low carbon in what sense? Attribution of CO2 emissions by demand, plus imports 80 Imports Inventories 70 Investment Government 60 Charity Households 50 Exports 40 mln tCO2 30 20 10 0 -10 1990 1995 2000 2005 -20 8 Source: ESRI/EPA ISus model; Hertwich & Peters, 2009 (43) Env Sci Tech.
Green Jobs? Environmental policy: how to meet our environmental objectives at minimum cost Energy policy is about ensuring secure and sustainable energy supply at minimum cost If it produces jobs, so much the better Paying too high a price for energy / environment will kill many more jobs than it creates Problem – jobs killed by uncompetitive policy not so visible
Environmental Policy Get Prices right E.g. Sustainable living Regulation E.g. Pollution of rivers Technical change needed R&D Incentivised by prices. Credibility of policy – ETS: uncertain price & windfall gains Non-ETS EU uses A model to allocate burden If wrong: Potential huge costs and transfers Major Problem for Ireland AND EU - agriculture