Policy implications of potential conflicts between short-term and long-term efficiency in CO2 emissions abatement
This paper shows that, under certain conditions (including path dependence and lock-in), policies and measures leading to a cost-effective GHG emissions mitigation in the short term may not allow reaching long-term emissions targets at the lowest possible cost, that is, they might not be cost-effective in the long term. The reason is that, in a situation where currently expensive technologies have a large potential for cost reductions through learning effects and R&D investments, the implementation of incentive-based mitigation policies such as taxes or tradable permits will encourage the adoption and diffusion of currently low-cost abatement technologies, but might not be enough to make attractive the diffusion of expensive ones, which is a necessary condition for these technologies to realise their cost-reduction potential through the aforementioned effects. A simple model and a numerical simulation are provided to show this possible conflict between static and dynamic efficiency, which points out to the need to combine different instruments, some aiming at short-term cost-efficiency (such as incentive-based environmental policy) and others at encouraging dynamic cost reductions (such as technology/innovation policy).
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Unruh, Gregory C., 2002. "Escaping carbon lock-in," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 317-325, March.
- Rennings, Klaus, 2000. "Redefining innovation -- eco-innovation research and the contribution from ecological economics," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 319-332, February.
- ., 1998. "Technological Change," Chapters,in: The Elgar Companion to Classical Economics, chapter 127 Edward Elgar Publishing.
- Jaffe, Adam B. & Newell, Richard G. & Stavins, Robert N., 2005.
"A tale of two market failures: Technology and environmental policy,"
Elsevier, vol. 54(2-3), pages 164-174, August.
- Stavins, Robert & Jaffe, Adam & Newell, Richard, 2004. "A Tale of Two Market Failures: Technology and Environmental Policy," Discussion Papers dp-04-38, Resources For the Future.
- Unruh, Gregory C., 2000. "Understanding carbon lock-in," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(12), pages 817-830, October.
- Sartorius, Christian, 2006. "Second-order sustainability--conditions for the development of sustainable innovations in a dynamic environment," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 268-286, June.
- Requate, Till, 2005. "Dynamic incentives by environmental policy instruments--a survey," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2-3), pages 175-195, August. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)