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Efficient Pollution Regulation: Getting the Prices Right: Comment

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  • Art Fraas
  • Randall Lutter

Abstract

The cost-effectiveness of cap-and-trade emissions regulations has become widely accepted. A 2009 proposal by Muller and Mendelsohn would replace conventional ton-for-ton trading with trading based on estimates of marginal damages by pollutant and by source. This proposal faces difficulties arising from the negative marginal damage estimates--neglected in Muller and Mendelsohn (2009)--for nitrogen oxide (NO x) emissions from many urban counties. Such estimates imply nonconvexities in air chemistry that complicate trading and could result in trades that increase emissions by both buyer and seller. Uncertainty in source-specific damages also creates rent-seeking opportunities and the potential for costly litigation. (JEL H53, Q53, Q58)

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.102.1.602
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 102 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 602-07

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:102:y:2012:i:1:p:602-07

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  1. Nicholas Z. Muller & Robert Mendelsohn, 2009. "Efficient Pollution Regulation: Getting the Prices Right," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 1714-39, December.
  2. Repetto, Robert, 1987. "The policy implications of non-convex environmental damages: A smog control case study," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 13-29, March.
  3. Burtraw, Dallas & Palmer, Karen & Banzhaf, H. Spencer, 2002. "Efficient Emission Fees in the U.S. Electricity Sector," Discussion Papers dp-02-45, Resources For the Future.
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Cited by:
  1. Nicholas Z. Muller & Robert Mendelsohn, 2012. "Efficient Pollution Regulation: Getting the Prices Right: Corrigendum (Mortality Rate Update)," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 613-16, February.
  2. Lenski, Shoshannah M. & Keoleian, Gregory A. & Moore, Michael R., 2013. "An assessment of two environmental and economic benefits of ‘Cash for Clunkers’," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 173-180.
  3. Nicholas Z. Muller & Robert Mendelsohn, 2012. "Efficient Pollution Regulation: Getting the Prices Right: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 608-12, February.
  4. Muller, Nicholas Z., 2012. "The design of optimal climate policy with air pollution co-benefits," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(4), pages 696-722.

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