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Environmental Economics Task Force Meeting, New York 2003

October 10, 2003

Columbia University   New York City, New York, United States

Agenda  132kb pdf
Meeting Report  553kb pdf

The first Environmental and Sustainable Development task force meeting was held in October 2003 at Columbia University. Each task force member had the opportunity to present his/her work to the group, to get feedback on the final papers, and discuss any points that could be developed more. It also gives the opportunity for task force members to work together to ensure subjects are not missing or repeated in multiple papers.


The meeting was split into three distinct sessions. The first session included overview presentations. Edward Barbier, of the University of Wyoming, presented his paper about resource degradation and poverty. Robert Deacon, of the University of California at Santa Barbara, and Bernardo Mueller, of the University of Brasilia, presented their paper on the political economy of resource use and economic development. Kirk Hamilton, of the World Bank, finished the session by presenting his paper entitled "Measuring Development Prospects by 'Greening' the National Accounts."

The second session addressed the macroeconomics of sustainability. Brian Copeland and Sumeet Gulati, both of the University of British Columbia, presented their work on the subject of trade and the environment. Ramon Lopez wrote a paper addressing structural adjustment, natural resources, and well-being in least developed countries. Jon Strand, of the University of Oslo, presented his work on macroeconomic policies and the environment and Thomas Sterner, of the University of Sweden, examined institutions for sustainable resource management in his paper. These papers could be especially useful for policymakers because they address specific policy tools and options on the macro level.

The third session of the task force meeting, held the second day of the conference, discussed the microeconomics of sustainability. R. Maria Saleth, from the International Water Management Institute, reported on his paper on water resource management. Alan Krupnick also presented his contribution on urban air quality.

  • Edward Barbier
    Task Force Member
    Professor of Economics
    University of Wyoming
  • Erwin Bulte
    Task Force Member
    Professor of Economics
    Tilburg University
  • Brian R. Copeland
    Task Force Member
    Professor, Department of Economics
    The University of British Columbia
  • Robert Deacon
    Task Force Member
    University of California Santa Barbara
  • Sumeet Gulati
    Task Force Member
    Food and Resource Economics Group
    University of British Columbia
  • Kirk Hamilton
    Task Force Member
  • Alan J. Krupnick
    Task Force Member
    Research Director and Senior Fellow
    Resources for the Future
  • Ramon Lopez
    Task Force Chair
    Professor of Economics
    Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics
    University of Maryland at College Park
  • Bernardo Mueller
    Task Force Member
    University of Brasilia
  • Thomas Sterner
    Task Force Member
    Professor, Environmental Economics
    University of Gothenberg
  • Jon Strand
    Task Force Member
    Senior Economist, Development Research Group, Environment and Energy Team
    The World Bank
  • Michael A. Toman
    Task Force Chair
    Adjunct Faculty Member
    Nitze School of Advanced International Studies
    Johns Hopkins University
All Files (4) zip
Natural Capital, Resource Dependency, and Poverty in Developing Countries: The Problem of “Dualism within Dualism”

293kb pdf
Edward Barbier

This paper argues that a competitive exchange rate is an important instrument for stimulating growth, but that it can be too much of a good thing if it diverts savings into the foreign balance and thereby diminishes the level of investment that can be financed. It builds a formal model of the growth-maximizing exchange rate where these two factors are traded off optimally.

Sustainable Development: Towards a Broader Policy Agenda

222kb pdf
Ramon Lopez,
Michael A. Toman

The central message of this volume is that the failure to achieve environmental sustainability has been the result of a systematic under investment in public goods by governments.

Environmental Policy Instruments and Institutions in Developing Countries

249kb pdf
Thomas Sterner,
E. Somanathan

This paper provides some reflection around the design of policy instruments for environmental and natural resource management in developing countries. It focuses on issues related to property rights, the provision of public goods and of information and monitoring and on the distribution of costs and benefits.

Impacts of Macroeconomic Policies, the Environment, Natural Resources, and Welfare in Developing Countries

265kb pdf
B. Gabriela Mundaca,
Jon Strand

This chapter discusses relationships between the macro economy and economic policy, and the environmental and resource situation in developing countries. We focus on the distortive effects of energy and resource subsidies, poorly managed monetary policy leading to exchange rate instability and high interest rates, and financial crises which often lead to too shortsighted policies and behavior regarding the management of environment and resources.