Labor Market Distortions and Welfare-Decreasing International Emissions Trading

Shiro Takeda*, Toshi H. Arimura, Makoto Sugino

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Using a multi-region, multi-sector computable general equilibrium model, this paper analyzes the effects of international emissions trading (IET) with a focus on labor market distortions. We construct four separate models with several different labor market specifications: (1) a model without labor market distortions; (2) a model with taxinteraction effects in the labor market; (3) a model with a minimum wage; and (4) a model in which a wage curve determines wages. We use these models to analyze how the effects of IET change according to model specification. The main results from the analysis are as follows. First, we found that IET generates gains for all participants in the model without labor market distortions. Second, even in the models with labor market distortions, importers of emissions permits are highly likely to benefit. Conversely, we show that the possibility of a welfare loss from IET is not as small for exporters of permits. In particular, in the minimum wage and wage curve models, we found that the exporters of emissions permits are likely to be disadvantaged. However, this also depends on the region in question. For example, China is likely to suffer under IET, whereas Russia is likely to benefit. Finally, if we implement policies to alleviate labor market distortion simultaneously with emissions regulation, all regions receive benefit from IET.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-293
Number of pages23
JournalEnvironmental and Resource Economics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Sept 15


  • Computable general equilibrium analysis
  • International emissions trading
  • Labor market

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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