Copyright © Jiangsu hailanzheng environmental technology co. LTD
苏ICP备123456号-1300.cnNanJing
这是描述信息

Environmental factor is an important input factor in the process of economic growth

  • Categories:新闻中心
  • Author:
  • Origin:
  • Time of issue:2019-06-26 09:57
  • Views:

(Summary description)Ma zhong is the director of the academic committee of the school of environment, renmin university of China, the national key discipline of population, resources and environmental economics, doctoral supervisor. Member of science and technology committee of ministry of ecology and environment, standing director of Chinese society of environmental science. He is mainly engaged in the teaching and research of economics of environment and natural resources. Green China person of the year 2009.

Environmental factor is an important input factor in the process of economic growth

(Summary description)Ma zhong is the director of the academic committee of the school of environment, renmin university of China, the national key discipline of population, resources and environmental economics, doctoral supervisor. Member of science and technology committee of ministry of ecology and environment, standing director of Chinese society of environmental science. He is mainly engaged in the teaching and research of economics of environment and natural resources. Green China person of the year 2009.

  • Categories:新闻中心
  • Author:
  • Origin:
  • Time of issue:2019-06-26 09:57
  • Views:
Information

Ma zhong is the director of the academic committee of the school of environment, renmin university of China, the national key discipline of population, resources and environmental economics, doctoral supervisor. Member of science and technology committee of ministry of ecology and environment, standing director of Chinese society of environmental science. He is mainly engaged in the teaching and research of economics of environment and natural resources. Green China person of the year 2009.

At present, the downward pressure on China's economy is increasing, and some people believe that the protection of the ecological environment may be relaxed. From the perspective of economics, why shouldn't environmental protection be relaxed during the economic downturn? During the period of increasing downward pressure on the economy, in order to maintain economic stability, what should be done to reduce the pressure? For this, our reporter interviewed ma zhong, director of academic committee of school of environment of renmin university of China.

Interviewee: ma zhong, director of academic committee, school of environment, renmin university of China

Interviewer: guo ting, our reporter

Why should we not ease up on environmental protection when the economy is under greater downward pressure?

For a long time, environmental factors have not been taken into account in China's economic growth

China environment news: at present, there is public opinion that environmental protection may be relaxed due to the increasing downward pressure on China's economy. Do you think this is true? From the perspective of economics, why shouldn't environmental protection be relaxed during the economic downturn?

Ma: from an economic point of view, raising environmental standards and strengthening environmental supervision will definitely increase the environmental cost of enterprises compared with the past substandard and untreated emissions. However, in the past, many enterprises failed to meet the requirements of ecological and environmental protection, and the profits obtained from illegal environmental activities, such as illegal discharge and over-discharge, were all unreasonable profits and profits. If we ignore this point and only see that the cost of enterprises has increased than in the past, this view is obviously incorrect and unreasonable.

Why is environmental protection supervised strictly, some enterprises lose money? It shows that such enterprises used to earn money for polluting the environment, which is black growth. Why did these companies make money when environmental regulation was lax in the past? It shows that these enterprises have problems with their management ability and can only profit by polluting the environment.

According to the basic principle of economic growth model, to achieve economic growth, it requires input of factors, such as labor, capital and resources. If the efficiency of these factors is higher, the output will be higher, the profitability of enterprises will be stronger, and the economic growth will be faster. Take coal as an example, the same electricity, who USES less coal, the higher the utilization rate of coal, the lower the cost, the faster the profit growth. Environmental factors (environmental capacity) have always been a factor input of economic growth. How do environmental factors play a role as an input factor in the process of economic growth? The lower the cost of pollution control, the higher the efficiency of environmental factor utilization. Thus, the environmental factor is a very important input factor in the process of economic growth.

But environmental factors differ from other factors in that the efficient utilization of environmental capacity can be cost-free. To make a profit, a business must invest capital to buy technology, resources and labor before it can produce. However, environmental factors are different. Enterprises can discharge pollutants into the environment at no cost. Compared with enterprises that install and operate pollution control facilities, enterprises that do not deal with direct discharge of pollutants are more efficient in using environmental elements. This is in complete contrast to the way other elements of efficiency are implemented. This is a question that economists have long ignored.

We have analyzed the operations of a steel mill that was profitable even when steel prices were low for more than a decade. But if the steel plant installs desulfurization facilities to reduce sulfur dioxide emissions by national emission standards, it will lose money as long as it produces. This shows that in the past, this enterprise has been making profits at the expense of the environment. Once the cost of environmental governance is taken into account, the enterprise will lose money.

For a long time, environmental factors have not been taken into account in China's economic growth. If the downward pressure on the economy increases, it will be regarded as the pressure exerted by environmental protection. Therefore, it will not be conducive to high-quality economic development. Therefore, strengthening environmental supervision can force enterprises to reduce production costs and improve production efficiency.

China environment news: in recent years, China's ecological and environmental protection efforts have been intensified, and great progress has been made in pollution prevention and control. If we relax environmental protection requirements now, what impact will it have on future environmental governance and high-quality economic development?

Ma: in the past, in order to achieve rapid economic growth, China's environmental standards were relatively low, and the environmental system and supervision were not strict enough. This created a huge profit space, and both producers and consumers took advantage of the dividends brought by the environment. But this environmental dividend is really a pollution dividend.

There is a famous saying in economics: "there is no such thing as a free lunch." That is, if you want a return, you have to invest. But for polluters, the environmental dividend is a "free lunch". This "free lunch" has no profit to producers or consumers, but it does harm to the environment and has a public impact. The benefits of environmental dividends coexist with the public damage they cause. This "free" is not really free, its expenses actually occurred in the external, revenue occurred in the internal. But this public damage will not directly affect economic growth in the short term. For a long time, we've been earning environmental dividends without realizing that environmental dividends are a source of economic growth.

The lesson of rapid economic development is that the cost of resources and the environment is too high, manifested in environmental pollution and ecological destruction. This type of economic growth is extensive and unsustainable. To translate this into internal costs is the cost of environmental governance. Therefore, we need to carry out a deep reflection, to promote green development, high-quality development, and promote the old drivers of growth. If we relax environmental protection efforts, we will not be able to achieve economic restructuring and high-quality economic development.

In order to maintain economic stability, what measures should be taken to alleviate downward pressure?

We should reduce transaction costs, tax costs, capital costs, energy costs, logistics costs and labor costs, rather than environmental governance costs

China environment news: in order to maintain economic stability during the period of increasing downward pressure, what should be done to reduce the pressure?

Ma: as mentioned earlier, economic production requires input of various factors, such as labor, resources and capital. These factors have the potential to improve efficiency, such as improving energy efficiency through technological progress, increasing labor productivity and adjusting loan interest rates. Factor efficiency improves ceaselessly, cost decreases ceaselessly, economy can grow ceaselessly.

At the central economic work conference held in December 2015, general secretary xi jinping proposed "three cuts, one cut, one cut and one complement", namely, cutting production capacity, reducing inventory, deleveraging, reducing costs, and strengthening weak spots. To reduce corporate pressure, we need to reduce costs. The costs to be reduced here are transaction costs, tax costs, capital costs, energy costs, logistics costs and labor costs, rather than environmental governance costs. Since the environmental governance cost of enterprises has been very low, if the environmental governance cost is reduced, the external environmental cost will be higher. Since other factors cost more, many people feel more pressure when the cost of environmental governance is included. In fact, environmental governance costs are very low compared to other costs.

Why is the economy growing so fast when other costs are so high? Because the cost of environmental treatment has been very low, the total cost of production is not high, and the economy can grow rapidly. Reducing other costs costs money, to invest in order to achieve, and environmental governance costs without investment can reduce costs, why not enterprises. However, now that environmental protection efforts have been stepped up, enterprises are forced to pay the environmental treatment costs they should have paid, so they feel the pressure is caused by environmental treatment, but fail to realize the pressure caused by other excessive costs.

Of course, through continuous improvement of environmental treatment technology and improvement of price mechanism, environmental treatment capacity can be continuously improved and treatment cost can also be continuously reduced, so as to achieve a win-win situation of pollution control and cost reduction. This reduction of environmental management cost is exactly achieved through strict environmental regulations.

China environment news: is there any stage of contradiction between environment and economy abroad? What are some good practices to learn from?

Ma zhong: environmental pollution is actually a market failure. Because the environment is public goods and the market is competitive, no one wants to increase the cost of environmental treatment. In the process of industrialization, some developed countries, such as the United States, Japan and the United Kingdom, have also experienced this kind of economic development at the expense of the environment.

When these countries are aware of this problem, they take the approach of establishing strict environmental protection systems with the goal of mitigating environmental damage. For example, the economic cost of acid rain in the United States is worth $120 billion. Through analysis and assessment, reducing the damage caused by acid rain requires the reduction of 10 million tons of sulfur dioxide. It would cost $6 billion a year to reduce sulfur dioxide emissions by 10 million tons if engineering measures were adopted, $4 billion a year if sewage fees were imposed, and $1 billion a year if emissions were traded. Through the policy evaluation, we decided to implement the emission trading policy. Finally, we achieved the reduction of sulfur dioxide by 10 million tons at the minimum cost. Meanwhile, the electric power production and economy of the United States kept growing.

Therefore, with clear emission reduction targets, strict environmental standards and the most efficient emission reduction policies, the requirements of ecological and environmental protection can be achieved without putting pressure on economic growth.

China environment news: how to promote high-quality development through ecological and environmental protection?

Ma: environmental factors are an important basis for economic growth. On the one hand, the carrying capacity of environmental capacity can contain pollutants generated by economic activities. On the other hand, more importantly, through ecological and environmental protection, production technology, pollution control technology and resource utilization technology can be pushed forward. For example, recycling economy can be used to replace consumable resources with renewable resources, so as to promote green and sustainable economic development.

Take Germany as an example. Due to strict environmental protection standards, Germany's renewable energy develops rapidly. After abandoning coal and nuclear energy, light energy, wind energy and biological energy account for 35% of energy consumption, while China's five major non-fossil energy sources, namely water energy, nuclear energy, light energy, wind energy and biological energy, account for only 13%. It is precisely because of Germany's strict environmental standards that high-quality, sustainable economic growth has been promoted. Therefore, the role of ecological environmental protection in economic development lies in guiding it to a sustainable path.

Scan the QR code to read on your phone

版权所有:江苏海澜正和环境科技有限公司 备案号:苏ICP备123456号-1