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Working papers from the Economics Department of the OECD that cover the full range of the Department’s work including the economic situation, policy analysis and projections; fiscal policy, public expenditure and taxation; and structural issues including ageing, growth and productivity, migration, environment, human capital, housing, trade and investment, labour markets, regulatory reform, competition, health, and other issues.
The views expressed in these papers are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the OECD or of the governments of its member countries.
Greener Growth in the Belgian Federation
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- Tomasz Koźluk1
- Author Affiliations
- 1: OECD, France
- 29 sep 2011
- Bibliographic information
The degradation of the environment due to climate change and pollution can harm living standards and damage growth prospects. In Belgium, one of the most densely populated OECD countries, pressure on the environment is particularly strong, and is reinforced by the high energy intensity of the economy and concentrated agriculture. Environmental policy backlogs accumulated over the years highlight the challenges of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and water pollution in a cost-efficient way. To achieve environmental goals at minimum cost across the economy the polluters should face the marginal costs of the externalities they impose, which should be achieved by increasing reliance on environmental taxation. Potential adverse effects on income distribution could then be addressed in the tax benefit system. Moreover, where environmental responsibilities are better dealt with at the regional level, regions should have the most efficient tools, such as taxation powers. Where, due to economies of scale and scope or important cross-regional effects, environmental issues are better dealt with at the national level (for instance in renewable energy sources and transport policies), better co-ordination among regions or a greater role of the federal level should be envisaged. This Working Paper relates to the 2011 OECD Economic Review of Belgium (www.oecd.org/eco/surveys/Belgium).
- Belgium, energy efficiency, road pricing, federalism, transport policies, green growth, greenhouse gas emissions, environmental policies, pollution, renewable energy
- Classification JEL:
- Q28: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Renewable Resources and Conservation / Government Policy
- Q48: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Energy / Government Policy
- Q53: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Air Pollution; Water Pollution; Noise; Hazardous Waste; Solid Waste; Recycling
- Q54: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Climate; Natural Disasters and Their Management; Global Warming
- Q58: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Government Policy
- R41: Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics / Transportation Economics / Transportation: Demand, Supply, and Congestion; Travel Time; Safety and Accidents; Transportation Noise
- R48: Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics / Transportation Economics / Government Pricing and Policy