The Impact on Industry and Competitiveness
Chapter 3: Environmental Regulation and Competitiveness in the European Union
15435_EnvironReg/Chap 3 30/5/02 2:48 pm Page 1 3. Environmental regulation and competitiveness in the European Union INTRODUCTION One of the striking features of the empirical literature reviewed in the previous chapter is the predominance of North American studies and the relative lack of studies on Europe. This is somewhat surprising given the commitment of the European Union to combining competitiveness with protection of the environment. Despite the growing role played by the EU in relation to the environment and the attention which policy makers give to improving European competitiveness, there has been nothing like the amount of empirical research looking at the impact of environmental regulation on competitiveness in Europe that there has been in the US. It is true that there tends to be far more detailed data available on the environmental impact of industry in the US, where the Environmental Protection Agency has been extremely active and freedom of information ensures public access. However, this does not explain the relative lack of studies of this issue in Europe. In most cases studies of competitiveness, at least those at the industry level, do not require extensive data on actual emissions and environmental performance, but rather trade and production data which is readily available at a European level. By focusing on the countries of the EU, this book fills the gap that has existed up to now in the environmental regulation and competitiveness debate. The bulk of the book involves case studies of three industries, iron and steel,...
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