ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Globalization's Effects on the Environment

Updated on March 15, 2018

Globalization is a concept surrounding the process by which businesses or organizations conduct business on an international scale. Often when you hear a discussion on globalization, it’s from an economic perspective. Economists argue that increased globalization can stimulate our economy by increasing competition in the marketplace. This may be true and while the economy is important; What other impacts can globalization have? Many people don’t realize the effect globalization can have on our environment! One could argue that increased globalization does not necessarily increase the sustainability of our resources; another argument is that it benefits the environment as much as it hurts it.

In a perfect world increased international trade would stimulate the economy enough to use some of the profit to protect the environment. However, various trends have noted that this is not always the case. Often times richer countries benefit the most and third world countries tend to be more polluted. And over time there has been an increase in air emissions, more holes in the ozone layer, and a decreasing amount of freshwater supply on Earth.

The transportation of goods across countries has a direct impact on our environment and although it is the least studied factor in regard to this debate, it tends to have more severe short-term impacts. Essentially the argument stands that the cost of shipping goods via truck, airplane, or ship increases the amount of pollutants released into the air. This could be avoided if more countries avoided trade and reverted to locally grown or manufactured products. However, producing domestically can have similar if not worse effects on the environment with greenhouse gas emissions and factory pollutants. Of course, this is an issue we face all the time in the United states and all over the world is the amount of driving we do, or flying, and how can we reduce the amount of Co2 we are releasing into our atmosphere.

Other indirect effects globalization can have on the environment which include scale, composition, and technique effects. Composition effect is the theory that more trade is associated with lower income countries that use a lot of energy versus higher income countries that have more strict regulations on their energy consumption. So, the long-term effects of this will cause countries that had lower amounts of energy consumption to increase and then basically “racing to the bottom” as far as standards goes. Technique effect is another theory that directly correlates with composition effect that states that businesses have the ability to decrease pollution effects in lower income countries by locating their businesses there and boosting the economy. For example, a company like amazon has the ability to move into a lower income country and use technological advances to improve the communities surrounding their location and positively impact the environment. They call this a “pollution haven”. Scale effect has to do with measuring technique effects by an income per capita basis.

Direct and Indirect factors in International trade have less of an effect than they seem but it should not be ignored! If all countries made the effects of globalization a priority when conducting trade, there is an opportunity to make a difference. There is no doubt that globalization can have economic benefits for all countries involved and so why shouldn’t it benefit the physical world we live in. Sustainability is such a growing concern with advances in technology being so frequent and a more and more limited amount of resources available. Big issues like climate change command the attention of the globe to address it and globalization gives it a platform to shine so businesses should take advantage of those benefits rather than just the profit benefits.

Works Cited

Gallagher, Kevin P. "Economic Globalization and the Environment." Annual Review of Environment & Resources, vol. 34, no. 1, Nov. 2009, pp. 279-304. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1146/annurev.environ.33.021407.092325.

Ghemawat, Pankaj. “Globalization Plays a Bit Part in Environmental Issues.” Harvard Business Review, 23 July 2014,

“Globalization and Its Impact on the Environment.” Environment News South Africa, 9 June 2016,

“Globalisation and the environment.” Resource for social workers to share, discover and learn,


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)