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Cap-and-trade programs under delayed compliance: Consequences of interim injections of permits

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  • Hasegawa, Makoto
  • Salant, Stephen

Abstract

Virtually every analysis of cap-and-trade programs assumes that firms must surrender permits as they pollute. However, no program, existing or proposed, requires such continual compliance. Some (e.g. the Acid Rain Program limiting SO2 emissions) require compliance once a year; others (e.g. the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative limiting CO2 emissions) require compliance every three years. The paths of emissions and permit prices would be invariant to compliance timing (Holland-Moore, 2013) if the government never injected additional permits between successive compliance dates. However, virtually all emissions trading programs require such injections through either (1) interim permit auctions or (2) sales from “cost containment reserves” intended to cap permit prices. In such cases, analyses which abstract from delayed compliance may mislead policy makers. For example, a cost containment reserve judged sufficient to cap prices at a ceiling over a year may sell out in a single day.

Suggested Citation

  • Hasegawa, Makoto & Salant, Stephen, 2014. "Cap-and-trade programs under delayed compliance: Consequences of interim injections of permits," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 24-34.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:119:y:2014:i:c:p:24-34
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2014.07.006
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    2. Simon Quemin, 2016. "Intertemporal abatement decisions under ambiguity aversion in a cap and trade," Working Papers 1604, Chaire Economie du climat.
    3. Quemin, Simon & Trotignon, Raphaël, 2021. "Emissions trading with rolling horizons," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 125(C).
    4. Garth Heutel, 2018. "Bankable Prices," NBER Working Papers 25235, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Simon Quemin & Raphael Trotignon, 2019. "Emissions trading with rolling horizons," Working Papers 1901, Chaire Economie du climat.
    6. Kollenberg, Sascha & Taschini, Luca, 2019. "Dynamic supply adjustment and banking under uncertainty in an emission trading scheme: The market stability reserve," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 213-226.
    7. Holland, Stephen P. & Yates, Andrew J., 2015. "Optimal trading ratios for pollution permit markets," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 125(C), pages 16-27.
    8. Khezr, Peyman & MacKenzie, Ian A., 2018. "Permit market auctions with allowance reserves," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 283-306.
    9. Marina Friedrich & Sébastien Fries & Michael Pahle & Ottmar Edenhofer, 2020. "Rules vs. Discretion in Cap-and-Trade Programs: Evidence from the EU Emission Trading System," CESifo Working Paper Series 8637, CESifo.

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