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Climate Policy's Uncertain Outcomes for Households: The Role of Complex Allocation Schemes in Cap-and-Trade

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  • Blonz Joshua

    ()
    (Resources for the Future)

  • Burtraw Dallas

    ()
    (Resources for the Future)

  • Walls Margaret A

    ()
    (Resources for the Future)

Abstract

The design and implementation of the allocation of CO2 emissions allowances in recent bills in the U.S. Congress introduces a new source of uncertainty to the climate policy debate. We examine the Waxman-Markey bill (H.R. 2454) with scenarios that vary outcomes associated with allocations to electricity local distribution companies, investments in energy efficiency and technology development. The average net household burden in 2016 ranges from $133, with a CO2 allowance price of $13.19, to $418, with an allowance price of $23.41. The uncertainty about average burdens does not carry over to the distribution of those burdens; both scenarios impose the greatest burden as a percentage of income on middle-income households. A third scenario that allocates a substantial portion of allowance value as lump-sum payments imposes an average net household burden of $206, with a price of $17.37 and with highly progressive distributional impacts.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by De Gruyter in its journal The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy.

Volume (Year): 10 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (November)
Pages: 1-35

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Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejeap:v:10:y:2010:i:2:n:5

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  1. Toshi H. Arimura, Shanjun Li, Richard G. Newell, and Karen Palmer, 2012. "Cost-Effectiveness of Electricity Energy Efficiency Programs," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 2).
  2. Parry, Ian W. H., 2004. "Are emissions permits regressive?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 364-387, March.
  3. Don Fullerton & Garth Heutel, 2010. "The General Equilibrium Incidence of Environmental Mandates," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 64-89, August.
  4. Kevin A. Hassett & Aparna Mathur & Gilbert E. Metcalf, 2007. "The Incidence of a U.S. Carbon Tax: A Lifetime and Regional Analysis," NBER Working Papers 13554, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Goulder, Lawrence H. & Parry, Ian W. H. & Williams III, Roberton C. & Burtraw, Dallas, 1999. "The cost-effectiveness of alternative instruments for environmental protection in a second-best setting," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(3), pages 329-360, June.
  6. Corbett Grainger & Charles Kolstad, 2010. "Who Pays a Price on Carbon?," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 46(3), pages 359-376, July.
  7. Parry, Ian W. H. & Williams, Roberton III & Goulder, Lawrence H., 1999. "When Can Carbon Abatement Policies Increase Welfare? The Fundamental Role of Distorted Factor Markets," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 52-84, January.
  8. Dinan, Terry & Rogers, Diane Lim, 2002. "Distributional Effects of Carbon AllowanceTrading: How Government Decisions Determine Winners and Losers," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 55(N. 2), pages 199-221, June.
  9. Palmer, Karen & Newell, Richard & Gillingham, Kenneth, 2004. "Retrospective Examination of Demand-side Energy-efficiency Policies," Discussion Papers dp-04-19, Resources For the Future.
  10. Burtraw, Dallas & Sweeney, Richard & Walls, Margaret, 2009. "The Incidence of U.S. Climate Policy: Alternative Uses of Revenues from a Cap-and-Trade Auction," Discussion Papers dp-09-17-rev, Resources For the Future.
  11. Burtraw, Dallas & Sweeney, Richard & Walls, Margaret, 2009. "The Incidence of U.S. Climate Policy: Alternative Uses of Revenues from a Cap-and-Trade Auction," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 62(3), pages 497-518, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Epanchin-Niell, Rebecca S. & Wilen, James E., 2010. "Optimal control of spatial-dynamic processes: The case of biological invasions," 2010 Annual Meeting, July 25-27, 2010, Denver, Colorado 61375, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.

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