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Climate Policy without Commitment

  • Golombek, Rolf

    (The Frisch Center for Economic Research)

  • Greaker, Mads

    (Statistics Norway)

  • Hoel, Michael

    ()

    (Dept. of Economics, University of Oslo)

Climate mitigation policy should be imposed over a long period, and spur development of new technologies in order to make stabilization of green house gas concentrations economically feasible. The government may announce current and future policy packages that stimulate current R&D in climate-friendly technologies. However, once climate-friendly technologies have been developed, the government may have no incentive to implement the pre-announced future policies, that is, there may be a time inconsistency problem. We show that if the government can optimally subsidize R&D today, there is no time inconsistency problem. Thus, lack of commitment is not an argument for higher current R&D subsidies. If the o¤ered R&D subsidy is lower than the optimal subsidy, the current (sub-game perfect) climate tax should exceed the …rst-best climate tax.

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File URL: https://www.sv.uio.no/econ/english/research/unpublished-works/working-papers/pdf-files/2010/Memo-02-2010.pdf
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Paper provided by Oslo University, Department of Economics in its series Memorandum with number 02/2010.

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Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: 11 Aug 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:osloec:2010_002
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, University of Oslo, P.O Box 1095 Blindern, N-0317 Oslo, Norway
Phone: 22 85 51 27
Fax: 22 85 50 35
Web page: http://www.oekonomi.uio.no/indexe.html
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  1. Jones, C-I & Williams, J-C, 1996. "Too Much of a Good Thing? The Economics of Investment in R&D," Papers 538, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  2. Karp, Larry & Tsur, Yacov, 2011. "Time perspective and climate change policy," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 62(1), pages 1-14, July.
  3. Reyer Gerlagh & Snorre Kverndokk & Knut Rosendahl, 2009. "Optimal Timing of Climate Change Policy: Interaction Between Carbon Taxes and Innovation Externalities," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 43(3), pages 369-390, July.
  4. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  5. Buchanan, James M, 1969. "External Diseconomies, Corrective Taxes, and Market Structure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(1), pages 174-77, March.
  6. Mads Greaker & Lise-Lotte Pade, 2008. "Optimal CO2 abatement and technological change. Should emission taxes start high in order to spur R&D?," Discussion Papers 548, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  7. Till Requate, 2005. "Timing and Commitment of Environmental Policy, Adoption of New Technology, and Repercussions on R&D," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 31(2), pages 175-199, 06.
  8. Downing, Paul B. & White, Lawrence J., 1986. "Innovation in pollution control," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 18-29, March.
  9. Goulder, Lawrence H. & Mathai, Koshy, 2000. "Optimal CO2 Abatement in the Presence of Induced Technological Change," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 1-38, January.
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