DP3677 | On Income Inequality and Green Preferences

Publication Date


JEL Code(s)


Programme Area(s)



We derive conditions of individual preferences and technology that give rise to a negative correlation between income inequality and environmental protection. We present a class of models (which captures a static model as well as an overlapping-generations model) in which individuals differ in earning abilities, and where a representative takes the decisions on a pollution tax and a redistributive tax. We show that, if private consumption goods and the environment are non-inferior goods, and the decisive individual has lower ability than the average, they will prefer a higher redistributive tax and a lower pollution tax.