Economics 375

ECON 375: Environmental Economics

Prerequisite: ECON 206

Credit Hours: (3)

Examines the nature and significance of threats to the environment, the history of environmental protection in the United States and the forces shaping public policy. Tools of economic analysis will be used to compare and contrast various legal and market oriented approaches to dealing with environmental problems and sustainable development.


Detailed Description of Content of the Course

Students will be introduced to environmental regulations on business, and formation of public policy.

Topic Outline


1. Visions of the Future
2. Economics of the Environment: An Overview
3. Property Rights, Externalities and Environmental Problems
4. Regulating the Market: Information and Uncertainty
5. Economics of Pollution Control: An Overview
6. Control of Stationary-Source Local Air Pollution
7. Regional and Global Air Pollutants
8. Control of Mobile-Source Air Pollution
9. Control of Water Pollution
10. Toxic Substances
11. Growth in a Finite Environment Further Economic Growth
12. Visions of the Future Revisited.


Detailed Description of Conduct of the Course

The following teaching strategies will be employed:


Lectures, discussion, videos, oral presentations, research paper.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

1. Review alternative perspectives on the nature of environmental problems, including the Materials Balance, Property Rights, and Co-evolutionary schools of thought.
2. Review of the history of environmental protection in the United States and examination of the forces shaping public policy.
3. Examination of the neoclassical normative criterion for decision-making in applications to environmental services and intergenerational welfare.
4. Examination of economic incentives for environmental protection, including emission charges, transferable permits, and legal liability.
5. Examination of the relationship between economic growth and environmental protection, including the concept of sustainable development.


Assessment Measures

  • Test I 100 Points
  • Test II 100 Points
  • Test III 100 Points
  • Final Exam 100 Points
  • Paper 100 Points


Other Course Information



Review and Approval

Date Action Reviewed by
December 2004 Made alterations to syllabus N. Hashemzadeh, Chair
April 16, 2012 Revised