The Finance Brown Bag Seminar is held by the Institute for Finance, Banking and Insurance (WU Vienna) and the Vienna Graduate School of Finance (VGSF). It serves as a presentation platform for PhD students, faculty members, and visitors. An overview of BBS on the website of the Institute for Finance, Banking and Insurance.
Youchang Wu, Lundquist College of Business, University of Oregon
Private Equity and Gas Emissions: Evidence from Electric Power Plants
(joint with Xuanyu Bai)
How does private equity ownership affect firms’ environmental performance? Using electricity generating unit level data from U.S. fossil fuel power plants, we find that private equity-backed buyouts reduce output-scaled CO2 and NOx emissions by 5.5% and 8.1%, respectively. The declines are mainly due to lower heat input per unit of output instead of lower input emission rates. The effects are concentrated in non-add-on deals, and are stronger for small plants and corporate divestiture deals. Our results suggest that private equity improves environmental performance by increasing production efficiency, but their effect on the non-efficiency component of environmental performance is generally insignificant.