Under communism, Eastern Europe's cities were significantly more polluted than their Western European counterparts. An unintended consequence of communism's decline is to improve urban environmental quality. This paper uses several new data sets to measure these gains. National level data are used to document the extent of convergence across nations in sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide emissions. Based on a panel data set from the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, ambient sulfur dioxide levels have fallen both because of composition and technique effects. The incidence of this local public good improvement is analyzed.
The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy (BEJEAP) is an international forum for scholarship that employs microeconomics to analyze issues in business, consumer behavior and public policy. Topics include the interaction of firms, the functioning of markets, the effects of domestic and international policy and the design of organizations and institutions.