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This paper offers a quantitative assessment of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic-induced lockdown and government fiscal plan, containing ‘green’ elements on the economy and the environment of South Africa. The analysis uses a dynamic computable general equilibrium model operationalised using a social accounting matrix coupled with a greenhouse gas balance and emissions data. We find that while the economy is harshly impacted by the pandemic in the short term, the government fiscal package ameliorates and cushions the negative effects on poor households. Importantly, an adaptation of the fiscal package towards a ‘greener’ policy achieves the same economic outcome and reduces unemployment. Carbon dioxide emissions decrease in the short run due to economic slowdown. This improvement persists until 2030. These results can be used as decision support for policy makers on how to orient the post COVID-19 policies to be pro-poor and pro-environment, and thus, ‘build back better and fairer’.
This special issue contributes to the natural resource economics literature by shining a light on the specific challenges and opportunities faced by developing countries that have recently become dependent on natural resources or are particularly exposed to climate change. It is composed of five studies on countries from all regions of the developing world, involving a variety of natural resources and policy issues. Four of the five studies illustrate how computable general equilibrium models are particularly well-suited, despite their relatively limited past use, to the analysis of natural resources. All five studies are led by researchers based in these countries, providing unique insights into the specific local context. The studies underscore the extreme vulnerability that the introduction of significant natural resource revenues and climate change can create in developing countries. They also show how the choice of appropriate policies to avoid the resource curse varies according to country-specific economic conditions.
In southern Africa, Middle Stone Age sites with long sequences have been the
focus of intense international and interdisciplinary research over the past
decade (cf. Wadley 2015). Two techno-complexes of the Middle Stone Age—the
Still Bay and Howiesons Poort—have been associated with many technological
and behavioural innovations of Homo sapiens. The classic
model argues that these two techno-complexes are temporally separated
‘horizons’ with homogenous material culture (Jacobs et al.
2008), reflecting demographic pulses and supporting large subcontinental
networks. This model was developed on the basis of evidence from southern
African sites regarded as centres of subcontinental developments.
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