European Business Schools Librarian's Group

Working Papers,
Copenhagen Business School, Department of Economics

No 10-2023: Trilemma or Trinity? The Nexus of Economic Growth, Circular Economy and Net Zero

Parantap Basu (), Tooraj Jamasb () and Anupama Sen ()
Additional contact information
Parantap Basu: Department of Economics, Durham University
Tooraj Jamasb: Department of Economics, Copenhagen Business School, Postal: Copenhagen Business School, Department of Economics, Porcelaenshaven 16 A. 1. floor, DK-2000 Frederiksberg, Denmark
Anupama Sen: Smith School for Enterprise and the Environment, University of Oxford

Abstract: How can economies achieve economic growth without causing negative environmental externalities? There are two aspects to the long-standing debate on 'sustainable growth'. A first-best solution is for economies to replace fossil fuels with renewable energy sources, mitigating carbon emissions. A second-best solution is for economies to also adopt efficient waste management, recycling residual waste and pollutants (including hard-to-abate carbon) from production (circular economy). We establish a simple growth model that integrates three fundamental pillars of economics: (i) the net-zero carbon target in environmental economics (ii) the circular economy, dealing with waste management in resource economics, and (iii) sustainable growth, in growth economics. We argue that growth, circularity and net zero emissions present a trinity of solutions to the sustainable growth problem, showing that the circular economy is a necessary condition for achieving net zero. We show that an economy with 'active' environmental policy achieves net-zero faster than one with 'passive' policy, and also eliminates carbon.

Keywords: Net zero; Growth; Circular economy; Pollution; Capital; Recycling

JEL-codes: O44; Q43; Q52; Q55; Q58

Language: English

38 pages, October 17, 2023

Full text files

c740f567-1a53-45ac-bbb4-10097d0460f9 PDF-file Full text

Download statistics

Questions (including download problems) about the papers in this series should be directed to Lars Nondal ()
Report other problems with accessing this service to Sune Karlsson ().

This page generated on 2024-04-17 04:36:03.