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Pollution and the Price of Power

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  • Donald N. Dewees

Abstract

This study analyses the un-priced environmental harm caused by generating electricity from fossil fuels in the ECAR control region south of the Great Lakes in 2004 and again in 2015 when the recent Clean Air Interstate Rule will have its full effect. Using existing damage values, we estimate wholesale electricity under-pricing for coal-fired plants at about $40 per MWh in 2004, almost as much again as the $45/MWh actual price. Averaging across all fuels, the price of electricity was more than $30/MWh too low. The under-pricing will still be $18/MWh for coal plants and $15 for all generation sources in 2015, a decade after CAIR was adopted. Recognizing this environmental price now could reduce pollution levels, increase energy conservation and lead to wiser choices of new generation technology.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by International Association for Energy Economics in its journal The Energy Journal.

Volume (Year): Volume 29 (2008)
Issue (Month): Number 2 ()
Pages: 81-100

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Handle: RePEc:aen:journl:2008v29-02-a05

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  1. Dallas Burtraw & Karen Palmer & Alan J. Krupnick, 1997. ""Second-Best" Adjustments to Externality Estimates in Electricity Planning with Competition," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 73(2), pages 224-239.
  2. Palmer, Karen & Burtraw, Dallas, 2005. "Cost-effectiveness of renewable electricity policies," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 873-894, November.
  3. Neuhoff, K. & Grubb, M. & Keats, K., 2005. "Impact of the allowance allocation on prices and efficiency," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 0552, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  4. Spencer Banzhaf, H. & Burtraw, Dallas & Palmer, Karen, 2004. "Efficient emission fees in the US electricity sector," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 317-341, September.
  5. Gernot Klepper & Sonja Peterson, 2005. "Emissions Trading, CDM, JI, and More – The Climate Strategy of the EU," Working Papers 2005.55, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  6. Paul L. Joskow, 2005. "Markets For Power In The United States - An Interim Assessment," Working Papers 0512, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research.
  7. Burtraw, Dallas & Palmer, Karen & Shih, Jhih-Shyang, 2005. "Reducing Emissions from the Electricity Sector: The Costs and Benefits Nationwide and for the Empire State," Discussion Papers dp-05-23, Resources For the Future.
  8. Richard S. J. Tol, 1999. "The Marginal Costs of Greenhouse Gas Emissions," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 61-81.
  9. Donald N. Dewees, 2006. "Electricity Restructuring and Regulation in the Provinces: Ontario and Beyond," Working Papers tecipa-205, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
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Cited by:
  1. Niu, Shilei & Insley, Margaret, 2013. "On the economics of ramping rate restrictions at hydro power plants: Balancing profitability and environmental costs," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 39-52.
  2. Dormady, Noah C., 2013. "Market power in cap-and-trade auctions: A Monte Carlo approach," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 788-797.
  3. Li, Zhe, 2008. "Productivity Dispersion across Plants, Emission Abatement, and Environmental Policy," MPRA Paper 9564, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Donald N. Dewees & Trevor Tombe, 2010. "The Impact of Sub-Metering on Condominium Electricity Demand," Working Papers tecipa-407, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.

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