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Trade and Environment

Theory and Policy in the Context of EU Enlargement and Economic Transition

Edited by John W. Maxwell and Rafael Reuveny

The debate about how best to manage the interplay between trade, industrialization and the impacts of both on the global environment continues to rage, particularly in the context of the introduction and ratification of the Kyoto Protocol. This book deals with a number of important issues surrounding the debate about trade and the environment, but places particular emphasis on the process of EU enlargement.
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Chapter 7: Environmental Implications of EU Enlargement: Lessons from the Southern Member States and Preliminary Evidence from Poland

Onno J. Kuik and Frans H. Oosterhuis


Onno J. Kuik and Frans H. Oosterhuis INTRODUCTION The accession of countries from Central and Eastern Europe to the EU will lead to institutional and economic changes in these countries that may affect their natural environments in various ways. One way of trying to understand these changes and their effects on the environment is to study past accessions to the EU. The southern enlargement of the EU in the 1980s offers an interesting comparison. At the time of their accession, certain economic and environmental characteristics of Greece, Spain and Portugal were comparable to those of present-day Central and Eastern European countries. This chapter analyses the environmental changes that accompanied the southern enlargement with a view to drawing some lessons for the eastern enlargement. As a check on the validity of these lessons, the preliminary evidence on the impact of Poland’s process towards accession will be discussed as well. In analysing the environmental dimensions of the southern enlargement we have used the analytical framework commonly used to study the impact of trade liberalisation on the environment: the decomposition of environmental effects into scale, composition and technique effects. The following section introduces this framework and explains how it is used in the present study. The next section looks at similarities between the southern accession countries in the mid-1970s and Central and Eastern European countries in the 1990s and argues that these similarities might justify a comparison. We then briefly describe the accession experience of the southern...

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