Social Costs of Industrial Growth: Which American States Manufacture More Efficiently in Terms of Air Pollution?

By James Tanoos.

Published by The International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: November 6, 2014 $US5.00

The Brookings Institute (2012) indicated that US industry makes a “disproportionately large contribution to environmental sustainability" as one of four important national goals. Although industrial production generally provides jobs and enhances the standard of living in a society, one negative aspect is that the manufacturing process emits contaminants and pollutant substances into the air. As such, increases in manufacturing productivity result in issues related to the tragedy of the commons, which is a depletion of a common resource due to the actions of rationale individuals or in this case, air pollution. Today, air pollution is often seen as a necessary byproduct of increased manufacturing output. This paper analyzes the green efficiency of American state economies by measuring composite air pollution vis-à-vis their overall manufacturing output. As such, this paper evaluates the social cost to American states of manufacturing output, and will assess industrially related GNP as well as societal damage due to the corresponding contaminants and harmful chemicals released into the air. The most recent US Environmental Protection Agency Toxic Release Inventory by state will be utilized. This information will be correlated with state gross national product attributed to manufacturing by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics in order to assess the efficiencies of state economic production. Productivity in terms of green efficiency will also be examined at the regional levels.

Keywords: Sustainability, Social Cost, Green Industrialization

International Journal of Climate Change: Impacts and Responses, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp.41-52. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: November 6, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 837.639KB)).

Dr. James Tanoos

Assistant Professor, Business & CIS Department, Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College, Terre Haute, Indiana, USA


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