Environmental intensity of economic growth in the Baltic Sea Region
National economic development is subject to a number of restrictions. One of the main constraints is the threat of complete exhaustion of non-renewable resources and environmental pollution exceeding the capacity of the planet. However, the rapid spread of resource-saving technologies is reducing the environmental intensity of economic activities. In this study, I aim to examine the ecological-economic dynamics of the environmental effects of economic development in the regions of Russia’s North-Western Federal District (NWFD). I employ an extended version of Peter A. Victor’s model to produce a comprehensive evaluation of changes in economic indicators
and correlate them with the total and specific environmental impact. I conduct a factor analysis to identify the main effects influencing the ecological-economic dynamics. The use of water resources in the NWFD demonstrates green growth, whereas electricity consumption and wastewater treatment fall into the brown zone and industrial and municipal waste treatment into the black one. The factor analysis has shown that population change has a very weak effect on the situation. Much more influential factors are the income effect (higher incomes translate into greater consumption and thus more significant pollution levels) and the technology effect produced by a decrease in the environmental intensity of production. To promote green development, it is advisable to increase the influence of the
technology effect by stimulating resource efficiency and switching to the circular economy model.