The Trilemma of Sustainable Industrial Growth: Evidence from a Piloting OECD's Green City

14 Pages Posted: 20 Dec 2019

See all articles by Quan Hoang Vuong

Quan Hoang Vuong

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management; Phenikaa University

Mạnh Tùng Hồ

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University

Hong Kong Nguyen

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University, Students; Toan Viet Info Service

Minh-Hoang Nguyen

Centre for Interdisciplinary Social Research, Phenikaa University ; Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University

Date Written: December 3, 2019

Abstract

Can green growth policies help protect the environment while keeping the industry growing and infrastructure expanding? The City of Kitakyushu, Japan has actively implemented eco-friendly policies since 1967 and recently inspired the pursuit of sustainable development around the world, especially in the Global South region. However, empirical studies on the effects of green growth policies are still lacking. This study explores the relationship between road infrastructure development and average industrial firm size with air pollution in the city through the Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) hypothesis. Auto-Regressive Distributed Lag (ARDL) and Non-linear Auto-Regressive Distributed Lag (NARDL) methods were applied on nearly 50-years’ time series data, from 1967 to 2015. The results show that the shape of the EKC of industrial growth, measured by average firm size, depends on the type of air pollution: inverted N-shaped relationships with NO2 and CO, and the U-shaped relationships with falling dust particle and Ox. Regarding infrastructure development, on the one hand, our analysis shows a positive effect of road construction on alleviating the amount of falling dust and CO concentration. On the other hand, the emissions of NO2 and Ox are shown to rise when plotted against road construction. The decline of CO emission, when plotted against both industrial growth and road development, indicates that the ruthlessness of the local government in pursuing green growth policies has been effective in this case. However, the story is not straightforward when it comes to other air pollutants, which hints at the limits of the current policies. The case of Kitakyushu illustrates the complex dynamics of the interaction among policy, industry, infrastructure, and air pollution. It can serve as an important reference point for other cities in the Global South when policies are formed, and progress is measured in the pursuit of a green economy. Finally, as an OECD SDGs pilot city and the leading Asian green-growth city, policymakers in Kitakyushu city are recommended to revise the data policy to enhance the findability and interoperability of data, as well as to invest in the application of big data.

Suggested Citation

Vuong, Quan Hoang and Hồ, Mạnh Tùng and Nguyen, Hong Kong and Nguyen, Minh-Hoang, The Trilemma of Sustainable Industrial Growth: Evidence from a Piloting OECD's Green City (December 3, 2019). Palgrave Communications, Vol. 5, 2019, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3497727

Quan Hoang Vuong

Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) - Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management ( email )

ULB CP 145/01
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Belgium
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Phenikaa University ( email )

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Ha Dong district
Hanoi, Hanoi 100803
Vietnam

HOME PAGE: http://sites.google.com/site/vuongqh2019/

Mạnh Tùng Hồ

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University ( email )

1-1 Jumonjibaru
Beppu City, Oita 874-8577
Japan

Hong Kong Nguyen

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University, Students ( email )

Beppu
Japan

Toan Viet Info Service ( email )

D4 Giang Vo
Ba Dinh
Hanoi
Vietnam

Minh-Hoang Nguyen (Contact Author)

Centre for Interdisciplinary Social Research, Phenikaa University ( email )

Hanoi
Vietnam

Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University ( email )

Beppu
Japan

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