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Macroeconomic and microeconomic environmental and energy policies: are they effective for improving the environmental performance of listed companies?

Donatella Baiardi and Maria Gaia Soana

No 478, Working Papers from University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics

Abstract: We empirically investigate the effectiveness of environmental and energy policies, complying with legal requirements or followed voluntarily by firms, on the proenvironmental efforts of 63 listed firms in Italy in the years 2008-2019. Our research design combines macroeconomic data referring to general policies for reducing air emissions, renewable energy interventions and energy efficiency measures with analogous policies applied at firm level on voluntary basis. The empirical analysis is performed in a panel data context by means of propensity score matching with multiple treatments, which allows us to test the effectiveness of (1) macroeconomic policies on firm environmental performance; (2) microeconomic policies on firm environmental performance, and (3) the coexistence of macroeconomic and microeconomic policies on firm environmental performance. Our results show that the effectiveness of these interventions, applied either separately or jointly, depends on the type of indicator used to proxy firm environmental performance. In particular, we find that the social costs of climate change are not internalized by listed companies, and that macroeconomic interventions are an excellent tool to implement because they are effective to fight climate change where voluntary actions fail and are also complementary to voluntary actions, since they support their effectiveness.

Keywords: Firm environmental performance; General policies for reducing air emissions, Renewable energy policies; Energy efficiency policies; Propensity score matching with multiple treatments; Italian listed companies. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 34
Date: 2021-08, Revised 2021-08
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cwa, nep-ene, nep-env and nep-isf
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