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The marginal damage costs of different greenhouse gases: An application of FUND

Author

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  • Waldhoff, Stephanie
  • Anthoff, David
  • Rose, Steven K.
  • Tol, Richard S. J.

Abstract

The authors use FUND 3.9 to estimate the social cost of four greenhouse gases-carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and sulphur hexafluoride-with sensitivity tests for carbon dioxide fertilization, terrestrial feedbacks, climate sensitivity, discounting, equity weighting, and socioeconomic and emissions assumptions. They also estimate the global damage potential for each gas-the ratio of the social cost of the non-carbon dioxide greenhouse gas to the social cost of carbon dioxide. For all gases, they find the social costs and damage potentials sensitive to alternative assumptions. The global damage potentials are compared to global warming potentials (GWPs), a key metric used to compare gases. The authors find that global damage potentials are higher than GWPs in nearly all sensitivities. This finding suggests that previous papers using GWPs may be underestimating the relative importance of reducing non-carbon dioxide greenhouse gas emissions from a climate damage perspective. Of particular interest is the sensitivity of results to carbon dioxide fertilization, which notably reduces the social cost of carbon dioxide, but only has a small effect on the other gases. As a result, the global damage potentials for methane and nitrous oxide are much higher with carbon dioxide fertilization included, and higher than many previous estimates.

Suggested Citation

  • Waldhoff, Stephanie & Anthoff, David & Rose, Steven K. & Tol, Richard S. J., 2014. "The marginal damage costs of different greenhouse gases: An application of FUND," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 8, pages 1-33.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:ifweej:201431
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.5018/economics-ejournal.ja.2014-31
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Richard S. J. Tol, 1999. "The Marginal Costs of Greenhouse Gas Emissions," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 61-81.
    2. repec:spr:portec:v:3:y:2004:i:2:d:10.1007_s10258-004-0033-z is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Maureen Cropper & James K. Hammitt & Lisa A. Robinson, 2011. "Valuing Mortality Risk Reductions: Progress and Challenges," Annual Review of Resource Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 3(1), pages 313-336, October.
    4. Kandlikar, Milind, 1996. "Indices for comparing greenhouse gas emissions: integrating science and economics," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(4), pages 265-281, October.
    5. Samuel Fankhauser & Richard Tol & DAVID Pearce, 1997. "The Aggregation of Climate Change Damages: a Welfare Theoretic Approach," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 10(3), pages 249-266, October.
    6. Kandlikar, Milind, 1995. "The relative role of trace gas emissions in greenhouse abatement policies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(10), pages 879-883, October.
    7. P. Michael Link & Richard S. J. Tol, 2004. "Possible economic impacts of a shutdown of the thermohaline circulation: an application of FUND," Portuguese Economic Journal, Springer;Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestao, vol. 3(2), pages 99-114, September.
    8. Tol, Richard S. J. & Narita, Daiju & Anthoff, David, 2008. "Damage Costs of Climate Change through Intensification of Tropical Cyclone Activities: An Application of FUND," Papers WP259, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    9. Peter Michaelis, 1992. "Global warming: Efficient policies in the case of multiple pollutants," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 2(1), pages 61-77, January.
    10. Anthoff, David & Hepburn, Cameron & Tol, Richard S.J., 2009. "Equity weighting and the marginal damage costs of climate change," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 836-849, January.
    11. Richard S. J. Tol, 2009. "The Economic Effects of Climate Change," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(2), pages 29-51, Spring.
    12. Tol, Richard S. J., 2001. "Equitable cost-benefit analysis of climate change policies," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 71-85, January.
    13. Richard S. Eckaus, 1992. "Comparing the Effects of Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Global Warming," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Number 1), pages 25-36.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Richard S. J. Tol, 2015. "Economic impacts of climate change," Working Paper Series 7515, Department of Economics, University of Sussex.
    2. Marten, Alex L. & Newbold, Stephen C., 2012. "Estimating the social cost of non-CO2 GHG emissions: Methane and nitrous oxide," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 957-972.
    3. Tol, Richard S.J., 2013. "Targets for global climate policy: An overview," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 911-928.
    4. Mackenzie, S.G. & Wallace, M. & Kyriazakis, I., 2017. "How effective can environmental taxes be in reducing the environmental impact of pig farming systems?," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 152(C), pages 131-144.
    5. David Anthoff & Johannes Emmerling, 2016. "Inequality and the Social Cost of Carbon," Working Papers 2016.54, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    6. Marcus C. Sarofim & Stephanie T. Waldhoff & Susan C. Anenberg, 2017. "Valuing the Ozone-Related Health Benefits of Methane Emission Controls," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 66(1), pages 45-63, January.
    7. repec:eee:eneeco:v:65:y:2017:i:c:p:16-31 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    climate change; social cost; carbon dioxide; methane; nitrous oxide; sulphur hexafluoride;

    JEL classification:

    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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