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The Costs of Kyoto for the US Economy

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  • Terry Barker and Paul Ekins

Abstract

The high costs for the US economy of mitigating climate change have been cited by the Bush administration as one of the reasons for rejecting US ratification of the Kyoto Protocol. A range of cost estimates are assessed in the IPCC s third report (2001), but they are hedged with so many qualifications that it is not easy to reach useful conclusions. This paper organises some of the quantitative information on costs of greenhouse gas mitigation for the US published before the US rejection of Kyoto. The aim is to put them in a wider context, e.g., allowing for non-climate benefits, and to draw conclusions that are robust in the face of the uncertainties. Important lessons can be drawn for how costs can be reduced in any future international commitment by the US to reduce emissions. Provided policies are expected, gradual and well designed (e.g., through auctioned Annex I tradable permits with revenues used to reduce burdensome tax rates) the net costs for the US of mitigation are likely to be insignificant, that is within the range +/-1% of GDP.

Suggested Citation

  • Terry Barker and Paul Ekins, 2004. "The Costs of Kyoto for the US Economy," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 3), pages 53-72.
  • Handle: RePEc:aen:journl:2004v25-03-a04
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Terry Barker and Katie Jenkins, 2007. "The Costs of Avoiding Dangerous Climate Change: Estimates Derived from a Meta-Analysis of the Literature," Human Development Occasional Papers (1992-2007) HDOCPA-2007-02, Human Development Report Office (HDRO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
    2. Norman, Catherine S. & DECANIO, STEPHEN J & Fan, Lin, 2007. "Opportunities and Challenges for the 20th Anniversary of the Montréal Protocol," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt3t90g0gr, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
    3. Hanemann, W. Michael, 2008. "What is the Economic Cost of Climate Change?," Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley, Working Paper Series qt9g11z5cc, Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics, UC Berkeley.
    4. Philippe Tulkens & Henry Tulkens, 2006. "The White House and the Kyoto Protocol: Double Standards on Uncertainties and Their Consequences," Working Papers 2006.89, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F0 - International Economics - - General

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