Helms School of Government


Doctor of Philosophy in Public Policy (PhD)


Michael Langlois


Environmental regulation, Porter Hypothesis, Air Pollution, Economics Activities, Competitiveness, Economics growth, Innovation




This study delves into the fascinating relationship between environmental regulations, air pollution reduction, and their subsequent impact on production, productivity, and innovation. By adopting Porter’s hypothesis approach, the study aims to shed light on a crucial aspect overlooked in previous studies - the prerequisite of “well-designed environmental regulation,” as Porter’s hypothesis emphasizes. The study uses microeconomic principles, whose conclusions propose a novel framework for crafting effective policies that balance curbing air pollution and fostering economic growth. Specifically, the study advocates for a tax rate on pollution that aligns with the marginal cost of the polluter within the industry. This approach ensures that environmental regulations are not only effective in reducing pollution but also facilitate sustainable production practices. Through a comprehensive analysis of industry-specific data and econometric modeling, we uncover the substantial potential of well-designed environmental regulations to enhance production and productivity. Moreover, our study highlights the transformative impact such regulations can have on innovation within industries, fostering the development of cleaner technologies and practices. By elucidating the profound interplay between environmental regulations, air pollution reduction, and economic outcomes, this study seeks to provide policymakers, industry leaders, and researchers with valuable insights into the importance of crafting meticulously designed environmental policies. Ultimately, this research contributes to the ongoing dialogue surrounding sustainable development, paving the way for a greener and more prosperous future.

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