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Economics: Economics Environmental Policy

EC 133 OL1 (CRN: 60781)

3 Credit Hours

About EC 133 OL1

Investigation of the relationship of markets and government regulation to environmental quality. Alternative public policies to improve efficiency and equity will be evaluated. Prerequisites: EC 011, EC 012.


Donna Ramirez Harrington ()


Dates: June 30 - August 8, 2014; Prereqs: EC 11 and EC 12;

More Information

Section Description

Welcome to Economics of Environmental Policy! Most of you are probably very aware or even very socially active in many local and global environmental causes. My mission is to provide you with the necessary economic tools that will enable you to critically examine these environmental problems and proposed solutions objectively through an economic lens. This course is designed to provide students with the deeper understanding of the economic underpinnings of environmental problems as well as the economic consequences of the policy tools adopted to address them. We will cover various environmental regulations in place or currently proposed in the US and throughout the world. While the textbook tends to be US-centric, it is very up to date. I will provide other materials and news items from various sources to give you more flavor of how environmental regulations are designed, how they are implemented and how they fare in other parts of the globe. INSTRUCTION AND LEARNING MATERIALS. Required Textbook: We will be using all chapters of this book. You need your own copy. Scott J. Callan and Janet M. Thomas, Environmental Economics and Management: Theory, Policy and Applications, 6th Edition. ISBN 13: 978-1-111-82667-3; ISBN 10: 1-111-82667-6. ? Note that the pages that will be indicated in the course outline (will be posted on Bb in June) are from the 6th ed. I require the 6th ed to avoid any confusion regarding the content. ? There is an electronic copy of this book: We will be using one chapter from this book below. The relevant chapter will be posted on Bb, no need to buy this book: Thomas Pugel, International Economics, ISBN-13:9780073375755; ISBN-10: 0073375756, Chapter 13 Other materials such as videos, links to news articles or other journal articles will be provided on Blackboard.

Section Expectation

Course Objectives At the conclusion of the course, students should be able to examine environmental policy issues using economic perspective. To achieve this, the course has the following specific goals: (1) To provide an overview of environment-economy interaction that shows the importance of economics in addressing environmental issues (2) To review the market model, specifically, the concepts of demand and supply (from EC 11 and EC 12) that will be necessary to analyze environmental policy issues (3) To apply the market model to explain market failure arising from environmental problems and explain the concept of efficiency using the theories of externalities, public goods and property rights (4) To describe the fundamentals of cost-benefit analysis as applied to environmental decision-making (5) To examine different types of environmental policy instruments, called command and control (CAC) and market-based instruments (MBI), and compare how they fare in achieving efficiency (6) To apply economic models and concepts (described in (1) to (5)) in examining specific environmental issues pertaining to air pollution, water pollution, toxic substances, solid waste and hazardous sites (7) To relate environmental policy issues with trade, economic growth and development. There will be 6 modules for the 6 week course. You are required to do 1 module per week.


1. At least 1 homework (on Bb) every week, due at varying times during the week 11:59 pm, end of each week. Homeworks are multiple choice format (with computations involved) and possibly some short essay. 2. At least one graded discussion board participation every week


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