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Inducing low-carbon investment in the electric power industry through a price floor for emissions trading

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  • Brauneis, Alexander
  • Mestel, Roland
  • Palan, Stefan

Abstract

Uncertainty about long-term climate policy is a major driving force in the evolution of the carbon market price. Since this price enters the investment decision process of regulated firms, this uncertainty increases the cost of capital for investors and might deter investments into new technologies at the company level. We apply a real options-based approach to assess the impact of climate change policy in the form of a constant or growing price floor on investment decisions of a single firm in a competitive environment. This firm has the opportunity to switch from a high-carbon “dirty” technology to a low-carbon “clean” technology. Using Monte Carlo simulation and dynamic programming techniques for real data, we determine the optimal CO2 price floor level and growth rate in order to induce investments into the low-carbon technology. We find that a carbon price floor can be used to induce earlier low-carbon technology investment and show this result to be robust to a large variety of input parameter settings.

Suggested Citation

  • Brauneis, Alexander & Mestel, Roland & Palan, Stefan, 2013. "Inducing low-carbon investment in the electric power industry through a price floor for emissions trading," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 190-204.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:53:y:2013:i:c:p:190-204
    DOI: 10.1016/j.enpol.2012.10.048
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    Cited by:

    1. Fan, Jin & Li, Jun & Wu, Yanrui & Wang, Shanyong & Zhao, Dingtao, 2016. "The effects of allowance price on energy demand under a personal carbon trading scheme," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 170(C), pages 242-249.
    2. Richstein, Jörn C. & Chappin, Emile J.L. & de Vries, Laurens J., 2014. "Cross-border electricity market effects due to price caps in an emission trading system: An agent-based approach," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 139-158.
    3. Brauneis, Alexander & Mestel, Roland & Palan, Stefan, 2013. "Inducing low-carbon investment in the electric power industry through a price floor for emissions trading," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 190-204.
    4. Alexander Zeitlberger & Alexander Brauneis, 2016. "Modeling carbon spot and futures price returns with GARCH and Markov switching GARCH models," Central European Journal of Operations Research, Springer;Slovak Society for Operations Research;Hungarian Operational Research Society;Czech Society for Operations Research;Österr. Gesellschaft für Operations Research (ÖGOR);Slovenian Society Informatika - Section for Operational Research;Croatian Operational Research Society, vol. 24(1), pages 149-176, March.
    5. Wang, Tan & Gong, Yu & Jiang, Chuanwen, 2014. "A review on promoting share of renewable energy by green-trading mechanisms in power system," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 923-929.
    6. Alexander C. M. Zeitlberger & Alexander Brauneis, 2016. "Modeling carbon spot and futures price returns with GARCH and Markov switching GARCH models," Central European Journal of Operations Research, Springer;Slovak Society for Operations Research;Hungarian Operational Research Society;Czech Society for Operations Research;Österr. Gesellschaft für Operations Research (ÖGOR);Slovenian Society Informatika - Section for Operational Research;Croatian Operational Research Society, vol. 24(1), pages 149-176, March.
    7. repec:eee:enepol:v:106:y:2017:i:c:p:111-121 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Mo, Jian-Lei & Schleich, Joachim & Zhu, Lei & Fan, Ying, 2015. "Delaying the introduction of emissions trading systems—Implications for power plant investment and operation from a multi-stage decision model," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(PB), pages 255-264.
    9. Angelo Antoci & Simone Borghesi & Mauro Sodini, 2012. "ETS and Technological Innovation: A Random Matching Model," Working Papers 2012.79, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    10. Barradale, Merrill Jones, 2014. "Investment under uncertain climate policy: A practitioners׳ perspective on carbon risk," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 69(C), pages 520-535.
    11. Alexander Brauneis & Roland Mestel & Stefan Palan, 2012. "Does a cap on the carbon price have to be a cap on green investments?," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 39(2), pages 217-231, May.
    12. Mo, Jian-Lei & Agnolucci, Paolo & Jiang, Mao-Rong & Fan, Ying, 2016. "The impact of Chinese carbon emission trading scheme (ETS) on low carbon energy (LCE) investment," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 271-283.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Carbon price; Price floor; Technological change;

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • O38 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Government Policy
    • Q55 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Technological Innovation

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