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A Hotelling Model for Fixed-Cost Driven Power Generation


  • Andreas A. Renz


  • Christoph Weber

    () (Chair for Management Sciences and Energy Economics, University of Duisburg-Essen)


This paper links Hotelling's theory, in recent literature applied to an emission constrained environment, with the classical capacity planning framework to describe portfolio time†paths in electricity production. Emission targets are considered by a ceiling on the stock of pollution. We propose conditions for an efficient production portfolio as a subset of available technologies. We then derive potential production portfolio time†paths for a renewable, a fossil and a carbon capturing technology that differ according to their fixed and variable costs, their efficiency and their polluting characteristics. We conclude that the share of the fossil technology will continuously decrease, the scarce resource will be fully exploited. On each constrained path, the stock of pollution will remain at the ceiling for a non†zero time period. Emission targets push down scarcity rents, an option for carbon capturing would decrease societal costs and uphold scarcity rents.

Suggested Citation

  • Andreas A. Renz & Christoph Weber, 2012. "A Hotelling Model for Fixed-Cost Driven Power Generation," EWL Working Papers 1206, University of Duisburg-Essen, Chair for Management Science and Energy Economics, revised Jan 2013.
  • Handle: RePEc:dui:wpaper:1206

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Eisenack, Klaus & Edenhofer, Ottmar & Kalkuhl, Matthias, 2012. "Resource rents: The effects of energy taxes and quantity instruments for climate protection," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 159-166.
    2. Lafforgue, Gilles & Magné, Bertrand & Moreaux, Michel, 2008. "Energy substitutions, climate change and carbon sinks," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(4), pages 589-597, November.
    3. Özge .Ic{s}legen & Stefan Reichelstein, 2011. "Carbon Capture by Fossil Fuel Power Plants: An Economic Analysis," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(1), pages 21-39, January.
    4. Ujjayant Chakravorty & Michel Moreaux & Mabel Tidball, 2008. "Ordering the Extraction of Polluting Nonrenewable Resources," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 1128-1144, June.
    5. Sunderkötter, Malte & Weber, Christoph, 2012. "Valuing fuel diversification in power generation capacity planning," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 1664-1674.
    6. Olli Tahvonen, 1997. "Fossil Fuels, Stock Externalities, and Backstop Technology," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 30(4), pages 855-874, November.
    7. Sjak Smulders & Edwin van der Werf, 2008. "Climate policy and the optimal extraction of high- and low-carbon fossil fuels," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 41(4), pages 1421-1444, November.
    8. Steffen, Bjarne & Weber, Christoph, 2013. "Efficient storage capacity in power systems with thermal and renewable generation," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 556-567.
    9. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1976. "Monopoly and the Rate of Extraction of Exhaustible Resources," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(4), pages 655-661, September.
    10. Chakravorty, Ujjayant & Magne, Bertrand & Moreaux, Michel, 2006. "A Hotelling model with a ceiling on the stock of pollution," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 30(12), pages 2875-2904, December.
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    More about this item


    Scarce resources; Optimal control theory; Hotelling; Valuation; Non†renewable resource; Pollution target; Climate change; Peak†load†pricing;

    JEL classification:

    • C61 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Optimization Techniques; Programming Models; Dynamic Analysis
    • Q32 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - Exhaustible Resources and Economic Development
    • Q41 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Demand and Supply; Prices
    • L94 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Electric Utilities

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