Vilanova i la Geltrú, Spain
Vilanova i la Geltrú, Spain

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Freire-Gonzalez J.,Harvard University | Font Vivanco D.,Yale University | Puig-Ventosa I.,ENT Environment and Management
Ecological Economics | Year: 2017

When an energy efficiency improvement occurs at the household level, several mechanisms, grouped under the name of the rebound effect, increase the available income and consumption, increasing the total energy consumption of the economic structure. The present research analyses the links between energy efficiency improvements in households, consumption, and the economic structure in an input-output framework. We examine, from an empirical perspective, the relationship between energy efficiency improvements and the economic structure, and between the direct and the indirect rebound effect. The limits of the input-output methodology in assessing the direct and indirect rebound effect have been empirically tested with respect to efficiency improvements of electricity uses in households in Catalonia. © 2016 Elsevier B.V.


Ertor I.,ENT Environment and Management | Ertor I.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Ortega-Cerda M.,Fundacio ENT MedReAct | Ortega-Cerda M.,Autonomous University of Barcelona
Marine Policy | Year: 2015

The increasing demand for fish products and the stagnation of capture fisheries has promoted the growth of aquaculture globally, leading to a significant increase in socio-environmental conflicts mainly in relation with finfish aquaculture. Despite this significant global growth, the European aquaculture sector has instead experienced stagnation in the last decade. While European public authorities are currently encouraging the growth of the sector in order to change this trajectory, conflicts over finfish aquaculture have nonetheless already taken place in Europe. Based on peer-reviewed articles, gray literature, and 27 in-depth interviews, this article analyzes such conflicts in Europe in the last two decades by examining their localities, characteristics, the different actors involved, and the arguments of these actors. In this way, it explores the relation of these conflicts to environmental justice theory. Findings highlight that resistances to marine finfish aquaculture in Europe do not have a purely conservationist motivation, but rather entail a complex set of claims supported by various actors. These include demands for an even distribution of burdens and benefits resulting from marine finfish aquaculture, the right to be recognized as relevant stakeholders, an effective participation process where actors have access to adequate and transparent information and a real capacity to influence the decision-making, and to be able to maintain their social functioning. Based on this analysis, the article derives political lessons for future European marine policies. © 2014 The Authors.


Freire-Gonzalez J.,ENT Environment and Management | Puig-Ventosa I.,ENT Environment and Management
International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy | Year: 2015

Energy and climate change policies are often strongly based on achieving energy efficiency targets. These policies are supposed to reduce energy consumption and consequently, associated pollutant emissions, but the Jevons paradox may pose a question mark on this assumption. Rebound effects produced by reduction in costs of energy services have not been generally taken into account in policy making (there is only one known exception). Although there is no scientific consensus about its magnitude, there is consensus about its existence and in acknowledging the harmful effects it has on achieving energy or climate targets. It is necessary to address the rebound effect through behavioral, legal and economic instruments. This paper analyzes the main available policies to minimize the rebound effect in households with special emphasis on economic instruments and, particularly, on energy taxation. © 2015, Econjournals. All rights reserved.


Gonzalez J.F.,ENT Environment and Management | Gonzalez J.F.,Autonomous University of Barcelona
Water Resources Management | Year: 2011

Water supply restrictions due to droughts generate significant costs to many economic agents. Although these costs are difficult to assess, this article presents a methodology to quantify, from a general equilibrium perspective, the macroeconomic impact of water supply restrictions through the estimation of aggregate production functions that include water consumption by sectors. Simulations with an Input-output model suggest a loss of 0. 34% of GDP in the case of modest restrictions on the water supply and 2. 8% in the case of more extreme restrictions for 2005 for the Catalonia region in Spain. © 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.


Font Vivanco D.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Font Vivanco D.,Leiden University | Puig Ventosa I.,ENT Environment and Management | Gabarrell Durany X.,Autonomous University of Barcelona
Waste Management | Year: 2012

In this paper, the material and spatial characterization of the flows within a municipal solid waste (MSW) management system are combined through a Network-Based Spatial Material Flow Analysis. Using this information, two core indicators are developed for the bio-waste fraction, the Net Recovery Index (NRI) and the Transport Intensity Index (TII), which are aimed at assessing progress towards policy-related sustainable MSW management strategies and objectives. The NRI approaches the capacity of a MSW management system for converting waste into resources through a systematic metabolic approach, whereas the TII addresses efficiency in terms of the transport requirements to manage a specific waste flow throughout the entire MSW management life cycle. Therefore, both indicators could be useful in assessing key MSW management policy strategies, such as the consecution of higher recycling levels (sustainability principle) or the minimization of transport by locating treatment facilities closer to generation sources (proximity principle). To apply this methodological approach, the bio-waste management system of the region of Catalonia (Spain) has been chosen as a case study. Results show the adequacy of both indicators for identifying those points within the system with higher capacity to compromise its environmental, economic and social performance and therefore establishing clear targets for policy prioritization. Moreover, this methodological approach permits scenario building, which could be useful in assessing the outcomes of hypothetical scenarios, thus proving its adequacy for strategic planning. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd.


Colon J.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Mestre-Montserrat M.,ENT Environment and Management | Puig-Ventosa I.,ENT Environment and Management | Sanchez A.,Autonomous University of Barcelona
Waste Management | Year: 2013

In modern societies, disposable diapers constitute a significant percentage of municipal solid wastes. They have been traditionally landfilled or incinerated as only limited recycling processes are being implemented in some parts of Europe. With the implementation of separated collection systems for the organic fraction of municipal solid wastes (OFMSWs) and the need to preserve the environment, compostable diapers have appeared in the market to avoid the main environmental impacts associated to non-biodegradable disposable diapers. In this study, a full-scale composting of door-to-door collected OFMSW with a 3% (w/w) of compostable diapers has also been carried out. Previously, lab-scale experiments confirmed that almost 50% of carbon of compostable diapers is emitted as CO2 under aerobic controlled conditions. The results obtained at full-scale demonstrate that both the composting process and the final end product (compost) are not altered by the presence of compostable diapers in crucial aspects such as pathogenic content, stability and elemental composition (including nutrients and heavy metals). The main conclusion of this study is that the collection of the OFMSW with compostable diapers can be a new way to transform this waste into high-quality compost. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Puig-Ventosa I.,ENT Environment and Management | Freire-Gonzalez J.,ENT Environment and Management | Jofra-Sora M.,ENT Environment and Management
Waste Management and Research | Year: 2013

The presence of impurities in biodegradable waste (biowaste) causes problems with the management of waste, among which are additional costs derived from the need to improve pre-treatment of biowaste, loss of treatment capacity and the difficulty selling treated biowaste as compost owing to its low quality. When treated biowaste is used for soil conditioning it can also cause soil pollution. Understanding the reasons why impurities are in biowaste and the factors affecting the percentage of impurities present can be used to determine ways to minimise these negative effects. This article attempts to identify the main causes for the presence of impurities in biowaste. In order to do so, it carries out an empirical analysis of the level of impurities in biowaste from municipal waste collection in two steps. First, a bivariate analysis focuses on significant correlations between the presence of impurities and several variables. Second, the construction of an explanatory model based on the significant relations obtained in the first step, and on literature research, are used to check the stated hypothesis. The estimates demonstrate that the collection system, the global levels of separate collection, the urban density of the municipality and the requirement to use compostable bags may be the main drivers of impurity levels in biowaste. © The Author(s) 2013.


Freire Gonzalez J.,ENT Environment and Management | Freire Gonzalez J.,Autonomous University of Barcelona
Energy Policy | Year: 2010

This paper reviews the empirical literature concerning the direct rebound effect in households; it briefly analyzes the main theoretical and methodological aspects, and finally estimates the magnitude of direct rebound effect for all energy services using electricity in households of Catalonia (Spain) using econometric techniques. The main results show an estimated direct rebound effect of 35% in the short term and 49% in the long term. The existence of a rebound effect reduces the effectiveness of energy efficiency policies. © 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Freire-Gonzalez J.,ENT Environment and Management | Freire-Gonzalez J.,Autonomous University of Barcelona
Ecological Modelling | Year: 2011

Energy efficiency policies have a special importance within carbon emission reduction policies to mitigate the climate change effects. However, potential reductions of energy consumption and, consequently, its resulting emissions, can be offset through the so called " rebound effect" The concept of " rebound effect" refers to a set of mechanisms whereby the improvement of efficiency reduces the cost of the energy service and this results in the household energy consumption rising and totally or partially negating the reduction achieved by the energy efficiency improvement. This paper provides a methodology to estimate the static direct plus indirect rebound effect of energy efficiency improvements in the use of energy in households. It is based on the combination of econometric estimations of energy demand functions, re-spending modelling and generalised intput-output of energy modelling. It also provides estimations for Catalonia. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.


Calaf-Forn M.,Autonomous University of Barcelona | Roca J.,University of Barcelona | Puig-Ventosa I.,ENT Environment and Management
Waste Management | Year: 2014

The Landfill Allowance Trading Scheme (LATS) is one of the main instruments used in England to enforce the landfill diversion targets established in the Directive 1999/31/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 April 1999 on the landfill of waste (Landfill Directive). Through the LATS, biodegradable municipal waste (BMW) allowances for landfilling are allocated to each local authority, otherwise known as waste disposal authorities (WDAs). The quantity of landfill allowances received is expected to decrease continuously from 2005/06 to 2019/20 so as to meet the objectives of the Landfill Directive. To achieve their commitments, WDAs can exchange, buy, sell or transfer allowances among each other, or may re-profile their own allocation through banking and/or borrowing. Despite the goals for the first seven years - which included two target years (2005/06 and 2009/10) - being widely achieved (the average allocation of allowances per WDA was 22.9% higher than those finally used), market activity among WDAs was high and prices were not very stable. Results in terms of waste reduction and recycling levels have been satisfactory. The reduction of BMW landfilled (in percentage) was higher during the first seven years of the LATS period (2005/06-2011/12) (around 7% annually) than during the previous period (2001/02-2004/05) (4.2% annually). Since 2008, the significance of the LATS diminished because of an increase in the rate of the UK Landfill Tax. The LATS was suppressed after the 2012/13 target year, before what it was initially scheduled. The purpose of this paper is to describe the particularities of the LATS, analyse its performance as a waste management policy, make a comparison with the Landfill Tax, discuss its main features as regards efficiency, effectiveness and the application of the "polluter pays" principle and finally discuss if the effect of the increase in the Landfill Tax is what made the LATS ultimately unnecessary. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

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