() and Klas Rönnbäck
Staffan Granér: Department of Economic History, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University, Postal: Box 720, SE 40530 Göteborg, Sweden
Klas Rönnbäck: Department of Economic History, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University, Postal: Box 720, SE 40530 Göteborg, Sweden
Abstract: Because of a growing population and industrialization, total pollution levels in many water-courses around the world have increased considerably for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. In the last few decades, however, the trend of increasing water pollution has been turned in many industrialized countries, delinking economic growth from environmental pollution. This is in essence one aspect of what many environmental economists call an ‘environmental Kuznets curve’. The research question of this project is why there is such a pattern to water quality in many countries? Much previous literature on the topic studies only the positive impact of environmental legislation. This study, focusing upon the case of the river Göta in Sweden, undertakes a more thorough analysis, including other crucial factors as well such as industrial transformation and decline, as well as stakeholder associations. The project utilizes a very long series of data on the water quality in the river Göta, covering more than 100 years of data for crucial indicators, in order to establish what factors were contributing to reducing levels of pollution. Analyzing the driving factors of this ‘Environmental Kuznets Curve’ can give us crucial insights into how a sustainable development might be achieved in the future.
55 pages, October 3, 2011
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