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Additional precision provided by region-specific data : The identification of fuel-use and pollution-generation coefficients in the Jersey economy

Turner, K. (2006) Additional precision provided by region-specific data : The identification of fuel-use and pollution-generation coefficients in the Jersey economy. Regional Studies, 40 (4). pp. 347-364. ISSN 0034-3404

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Abstract

Turner K. (2006) Additional precision provided by region-specific data: the identification of fuel-use and pollution-generation coefficients in the Jersey economy, Regional Studies 40, 347-364. A debate is currently ongoing in the UK regarding the need to collect and report data at the regional level. One specific area of this debate is the extent to which region-specific economic and environmental data are required to carry out analyses of devolved sustainability policy issues. This paper uses the Jersey economy as a case study to assess the added precision from using good-quality region-specific data compared with adjusted national UK data. It is found that, due to differences in polluting technology between Jersey and the UK, estimates based on national emissions intensities produce results that are misleading in terms of both absolute pollution levels and the relative contribution of different activities to total emissions in the economy. While Jersey may be regarded as atypical in many ways relative to other UK regions, it is argued that, the results show that regional environmental accounts must reflect differences in polluting technology in different locations. Moreover, accounting for differences in polluting technology is even more crucial in light of current policy interest in tracing the actual resource use and pollution generation in any one region's or country's imports to measure the global impact, or ecological footprint, of economic activity.