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Structural Change and Convergence of Energy Intensity across OECD Countries, 1970-2005

Peter Mulder () and Henri de Groot ()

No 12-027/3, Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers from Tinbergen Institute

Abstract: This paper uses a new dataset derived from a consistent framework of national accounts to compute and evaluate energy intensity developments across 18 OECD countries and 50 sectors over the period 1970-2005. We find that across countries energy intensity levels tend to increase in a fairly wide range of Services subsectors, but decrease in most Manufacturing sectors. A decomposition analysis reveals that changes in the sectoral composition of the economy explain a considerable and increasing part of aggregate energy intensity dynamics. A convergence analysis reveals that only after 1995 cross-country variation in aggregate energy intensity levels clearly tends to decrease, driven by a strong and robust trend break in Manufacturing and enhanced convergence in Services. Moreover, we find evidence for the hypothesis that across sectors lagging countries are catching-up with leading countries, with rates of convergence on average being higher in Services than in Manufacturing. Aggregate convergence patterns are almost exclusively caused by convergence of within-sector energy intensity levels, and not by convergence of the sectoral composition of economies. This discussion paper led to a publication in Energy Economics .

Keywords: Energy Intensity; Convergence; Decomposition; Sectoral Analysis (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O13 O47 O5 Q43 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2012-03-12
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Journal Article: Structural change and convergence of energy intensity across OECD countries, 1970–2005 (2012) Downloads
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