The Treadmill of Destruction in Comparative Perspective: A Panel Study of Military Spending and Carbon Emissions, 1960-2014
Keywords:Militarism, Militarization, Carbon emissions, Treadmill of destruction, Treadmill of production
This article analyzes a unique panel data set to assess the effect of militarism on per capita carbon dioxide emissions. We extend previous research examining the effects of military expenditures on carbon emissions by including in our analyses over 30 years of additional data. In addition, we compare our preliminary results to those obtained from other estimation procedures. Specifically, we report and visually illustrate the results of 54 cross-sectional models (one for each year) and 36 unique panel regression models on both balanced and unbalanced panels. We assess how this relationship has changed over time by testing for interactions between military spending and time and by systematically re-analyzing our data across 180 panel regressions with varying time frames. A strong and enduring association between military spending and per capita carbon emissions is indicated in cross-sectional comparisons. Our panel analyses reveal a much weaker and varying relationship that has become stronger in recent decades. Moreover, we find that the effect of military spending on per capita carbon emissions is moderated by countries’ level of economic development, with military spending of more wealthy countries having relatively larger net effects on carbon emissions. We partially confirm previous findings on the temporal stability of the environmental impacts of militarism. Our analyses show, however, that this temporal stability has emerged relatively recently, and that the relationship between military expenditures and carbon emissions is weaker prior to the 1990s.
Bailey, Delia and Jonathan N. Katz. 2011. “Implementing Panel Corrected Standard Errors in R: The pcse Package.” Journal of Statistical Software. 42(CS1):1–11
Beck, Nathaniel and Jonathan N. Katz. 1995. “What to do (and not to do) with time-series cross-section data.” American Political Science Review, 89(3):634-647.
Bradford, J. H. and A. M. Stoner. 2014. “The Treadmill of Destruction and Ecological Exchange in Comparative Perspective: A Panel Study of the Biological Capacity of Nations, 1961-2007.” Contemporary Journal of Anthropology and Sociology 4(2):87-113.
Clark, Brett and Andrew K. Jorgenson. 2012. “The Treadmill of Destruction and the Environmental Impacts of Militaries.” Sociology Compass, 6(7):557-569.
Cochrane, D. and G. H. Orcutt. 1949. "Application of Least Squares Regression to Relationships Containing Auto-Correlated Error Terms". Journal of the American Statistical Association. 44(245):32–61.
Dickens, Peter. 2004. Society and Nature. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press.
Dycus, Stephen. 1996. National defense and the environment. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England.
Homer-Dixon, Thomas F. 1999. Environment, Scarcity and Violence. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Hooks, Gregory and Chad L. Smith. 2004. “The Treadmill of Destruction: National Sacrifice Areas and Native Americans.” American Sociological Review 69(4):558-575.
———. 2005. “Treadmills of Production and Destruction Threats to the Environment Posed by Militarism.” Organization & environment 18(1):19-37.
———. 2012. “The Treadmill of Destruction Goes Global.” Pp. 60-86 in The Marketing of War in the Age of Neo-Militarism, edited by Kostas Gouliamos and Christos Kassimeris. New York, NY: Routledge.
Jorgenson, Andrew K. and Brett Clark. 2009. “The Economy, Military, and Ecologically Unequal Exchange Relationships in Comparative Perspective: A Panel Study of the Ecological Footprints of Nations, 1975-2000.” Social Problems, 56(4):621-646.
———. 2012. “Are the Economy and the Environment Decoupling? A Comparative International Study, 1960–2005.” American Journal of Sociology, 118(1):1-44.
———. 2016. “The temporal stability and developmental differences in the environmental impacts of militarism: the treadmill of destruction and consumption-based carbon emissions.” Sustainability Science 11(3):505–14.
Jorgenson, Andrew K., Brett Clark, and Jeffrey Kentor. 2010. “Militarization and the environment: A panel study of carbon dioxide emissions and the ecological footprints of nations, 1970–2000.” Global Environmental Politics 10(1):7-29.
Kashin, Konstantin. 2014. “panelAR”. Retrieved October 30, 2016. https://github.com/kkashin/panelAR.
Kentor, Jeffrey and Edward Kick. 2008. “Bringing the Military Back In: Military Expenditures and Economic Growth 1990 to 2003.” Journal of World-Systems Research XIV(2):142-172.
LaDuke, Winona. 1999. All Our Relations: Native Struggles for Land and Life. Boston, MA: South End Press.
Le Quéré C, R. Moriarty, R. M. Andrew, et. al. 2015. “Global Carbon Budget 2015.” Earth System Science Data 7(2):165–185.
Molotch, Harvey. 1976. “The City as a Growth Machine: Toward a Political Economy of Place.” American Journal of Sociology 82(2):309-332.
Parenti, Christian. 2011. Tropic of Chaos: Climate Change and the New Geography of Violence. New York: Perseus Books.
Parks, Bradley. C. and J. Timmons Roberts. 2010. “Climate Change, Social Theory and Justice.” Theory, Culture & Society, 27(2-3):134-166.
Prais, S. J. and Winsten, C. B. 1954. “Trend Estimators and Serial Correlation” (PDF). Cowles Commission Discussion Paper No. 383. Chicago.
Roberts, J. Timmons and Bradley Parks. 2007. A Climate of Injustice: Global Inequality, North-South Politics, and Climate Policy. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Reuveny, Rafael. 2007. “Climate Change-Induced Migration and Conflict.” Political Geography, 26(6):656-673.
Salehyan, Idean. 2008. “From Climate Change to Conflict? No Consensus Yet.” Journal of Peace Research 45(3):315–26.
Santana, Deborah Berman. 2002. “Resisting Toxic Militarism: Vieques versus the U.S. Navy.” Social Justice 29(1-2):37-48.
Schnaiberg, Allan. 1980. The Environment: From Surplus to Scarcity. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Schnaiberg, Allan and Kenneth Alan Gould. 1994. Environment and Society: The Enduring Conflict. New York, NY: St. Martin’s Press.
Shandra, John M. 2007. “Economic Dependency, Repression, and Deforestation: A Quantitative, Cross-National Analysis.” Sociological Inquiry 77(4):543-571.
Smith, and Chad L., Gregory Hooks, and Michael Lengefeld. 2014. “The War on Drugs in Colombia: The Environment, the Treadmill of Destruction and Risk-Transfer Militarism.” Journal of World-Systems Research 20(2):185-206.
Spaargaren, Gert. 2000. “Ecological Modernization Theory and the Changing Discourse on Environment and Modernity.” Pp. 41-72 in Environment and Global Modernity, edited by Gert Spaargaren, Arthur Mol, and Frederick Buttel. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.
Theisen, Ole Magnus. 2008. “Blood and Soil? Resource Scarcity and Internal Armed Conflict Revisited.” Journal of Peace Research 45(6):801-818.
World Bank. 2016. World Development Indicators. http://databank.worldbank.org/data/.
Wooldridge, Jeffrey M. 2013. Introductory Econometrics: A Modern Approach, 5th ed. Mason, OH: Thomson.
How to Cite
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- The Author retains copyright in the Work, where the term “Work” shall include all digital objects that may result in subsequent electronic publication or distribution.
- Upon acceptance of the Work, the author shall grant to the Publisher the right of first publication of the Work.
- The Author shall grant to the Publisher and its agents the nonexclusive perpetual right and license to publish, archive, and make accessible the Work in whole or in part in all forms of media now or hereafter known under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License or its equivalent, which, for the avoidance of doubt, allows others to copy, distribute, and transmit the Work under the following conditions:
- Attribution—other users must attribute the Work in the manner specified by the author as indicated on the journal Web site;
- The Author is able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the nonexclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the Work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), as long as there is provided in the document an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post online a prepublication manuscript (but not the Publisher’s final formatted PDF version of the Work) in institutional repositories or on their Websites prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work. Any such posting made before acceptance and publication of the Work shall be updated upon publication to include a reference to the Publisher-assigned DOI (Digital Object Identifier) and a link to the online abstract for the final published Work in the Journal.
- Upon Publisher’s request, the Author agrees to furnish promptly to Publisher, at the Author’s own expense, written evidence of the permissions, licenses, and consents for use of third-party material included within the Work, except as determined by Publisher to be covered by the principles of Fair Use.
- The Author represents and warrants that:
- the Work is the Author’s original work;
- the Author has not transferred, and will not transfer, exclusive rights in the Work to any third party;
- the Work is not pending review or under consideration by another publisher;
- the Work has not previously been published;
- the Work contains no misrepresentation or infringement of the Work or property of other authors or third parties; and
- the Work contains no libel, invasion of privacy, or other unlawful matter.
- The Author agrees to indemnify and hold Publisher harmless from Author’s breach of the representations and warranties contained in Paragraph 6 above, as well as any claim or proceeding relating to Publisher’s use and publication of any content contained in the Work, including third-party content.
Revised 7/16/2018. Revision Description: Removed outdated link.