Environmental Economics Seminar
“Estimating the Effects of Incomplete Regulation on Multi-Plant Firms and their Competitors”
Tenured Researcher at PJSE
Incomplete regulation only applies to some firms within an industry. When evaluating the effects of such regulation, researchers often rely on statistical methods that compare directly-affected firms to “control” firms in the same industry; but in many cases, these “control” firms are affected by the regulation itself via competition on the output market with directly-affected firms. While this point is widely acknowledged, there has been little effort to address it empirically. In this paper, we develop a new method for estimating both the direct effect and the indirect effect of a shock to marginal cost on some firms in an industry when products are differentiated and firms have several plants.
We apply our method to French manufacturers under the EU ETS regulation. We find that this regulation tended to increase sales of regulated firms and reduce CO2 emission intensity. The results are consistent with the Porter hypothesis: regulation induced cost-saving investments which both lowered emission intensity and increased sales.
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