Patricia Zurano Cervelló


This thesis is dedicated to the development of tools to assist policy makers in the creation of effective regulations in an efficient and methodical way. The thesis is organized into four main sections. In section 1, we present the introduction, where we establish the background of the methods and data used in this work, as well as the literature gaps that we cover with our studies. Section 2 is based on the first work, where we study the eco-efficiency of the EU manufacturing sectors by combining MREEIO tables with the DEA method, following the production and consumption-based approaches. This allows us to identify the sectors requiring regulations in specific burdens. Then, in section 3, we use DEA to determine the sustainability efficiency of the EU electricity mixes by analyzing the social, economic and environmental features of each portfolio. In a second stage, we use a tailored mathematical model named EffMixF to obtain new electricity mixes for the countries found inefficient in the previous step. These new mixes can be used as roadmap to devise specific regulations for the sector, indicating which technologies should be boosted and which hindered in each inefficient country. Finally, in section 4, we determine the key driving factors of the environmental impact on a global scale. For this, we first compare two decomposition techniques, the SDA and the Shapley-Sun methods, establishing their similarities and introducing a simplified general equation that can be used in substitution of both methods. Then, we apply these methods in a case study, where we consider a selection of environmental impacts in a 15-year period, to determine the usefulness of the decomposition methods. The tools developed in this thesis provide valuable insight regarding the weaknesses and improvement opportunities of the economic sectors in a macroeconomic scale.