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Efficiency gains from integrated multipollutant trading

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  • Reeling, Carson
  • Garnache, Cloé
  • Horan, Richard

Abstract

Interest in expanding market-based approaches involving intra-pollutant trading (trading “like” pollutants) to allow inter-pollutant trading (trading “dis-similar” pollutants) is growing. Because many pollutants are regulated separately, designing inter-pollutant markets requires considering pre-existing regulatory constraints. We examine the optimal choices of inter- and intra-pollutant trade ratios when (i) some firms generate multiple pollutants affecting different media and (ii) permit caps are sub-optimal, having been exogenously specified by prior regulations. While the first-best outcome is unobtainable in this setting, we find inter-pollutant trading enhances efficiency by offering an additional policy instrument: the inter-pollutant trade ratio. Moreover, adjustments to intra-pollutant trade ratios reflecting the joint production of dis-similar pollutants can enhance efficiency. We also find realistic cases where inter-pollutant trading may universally improve environmental quality, easing concerns that trading across environmental media may harm one medium. An example of nitrogen trading in Pennsylvania’s Susquehanna River Basin illustrates our results.

Suggested Citation

  • Reeling, Carson & Garnache, Cloé & Horan, Richard, 2018. "Efficiency gains from integrated multipollutant trading," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 124-136.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:resene:v:52:y:2018:i:c:p:124-136
    DOI: 10.1016/j.reseneeco.2018.01.005
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Carson Reeling & Richard D. Horan & Cloé Garnache, 2018. "Multi-Pollutant Point-Nonpoint Trading with Participation Decisions: The Role of Transaction Costs," CESifo Working Paper Series 7152, CESifo.
    2. Carson Reeling & Richard D. Horan & Cloé Garnache, 2020. "When the Levee Breaks: Can Multi‐Pollutant Markets Break the Dam on Point–Nonpoint Market Participation?," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 102(2), pages 625-640, March.
    3. Fabio Antoniou & Panos Hatzipanayotou & Nikos Tsakiris, 2021. "Strategic Export Motives and Linking Emission Markets," CESifo Working Paper Series 8847, CESifo.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Instrument design; Multi-pollutant markets; Pollution permit markets; Second-best;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • Q53 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Air Pollution; Water Pollution; Noise; Hazardous Waste; Solid Waste; Recycling
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy

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