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An experimental analysis of grandfathering vs dynamic auctioning in the EU ETS

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Abstract

This study constitutes a first attempt to experimentally test the performance of a 100% auction versus a 100% free allocation of CO2 permits under the rules and parameters that mimic the EU ETS (imperfect competition, uncertainty in emissions’ control, and allowing banking). It also incorporates a first attempt to include in the analysis measures of the risk preferences of subjects participating in emission permits experiments. Another distinctive feature of this study is the implementation of a theoretically appropriate auction format for the primary allocation of emission permits. Our experimental results indicate that the EU ETS has the potential to reduce CO2 emissions, achieving targets considerably more restrictive than the current ones at high efficiency levels, both with auctioned and free emission permits. Auctioning, however, reveals a clear potential to do better than grandfathering the initial allocation of permits. In addition, the results reveal that concerns about undue scarcity, and corresponding high prices, in secondary markets generated by a primary auction market are not warranted under the proposed dynamic auction format.

Suggested Citation

  • Anabela Botelho & Eduarda Fernandes & Lígia Costa Pinto, 2010. "An experimental analysis of grandfathering vs dynamic auctioning in the EU ETS," NIMA Working Papers 39, Núcleo de Investigação em Microeconomia Aplicada (NIMA), Universidade do Minho.
  • Handle: RePEc:nim:nimawp:39/2010
    DOI: 10.1108/S0193-2306(2011)0000014005
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    File URL: http://www3.eeg.uminho.pt/publications/NIMAwp39.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lata Gangadharan & Rachel Croson & Alex Farrell, 2013. "Investment decisions and emissions reductions: results from experiments in emissions trading," Chapters,in: Handbook on Experimental Economics and the Environment, chapter 8, pages 233-264 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    2. Richard Newell & William Pizer & Jiangfeng Zhang, 2005. "Managing Permit Markets to Stabilize Prices," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 31(2), pages 133-157, June.
    3. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
    4. Cason, Timothy N & Gangadharan, Lata, 2003. "Transactions Costs in Tradable Permit Markets: An Experimental Study of Pollution Market Designs," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 23(2), pages 145-165, March.
    5. Johan Eyckmans & Jan Cornillie, 2000. "Efficiency and Equity of the EU Burden Sharing Agreement," Energy, Transport and Environment Working Papers Series ete0002, KU Leuven, Department of Economics - Research Group Energy, Transport and Environment, revised Jun 2002.
    6. Godby, Robert W. & Mestelman, Stuart & Muller, R. Andrew & Welland, J. Douglas, 1997. "Emissions Trading with Shares and Coupons when Control over Discharges Is Uncertain," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 359-381, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eva Camacho-Cuena & Till Requate & Israel Waichman, 2012. "Investment Incentives Under Emission Trading: An Experimental Study," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 53(2), pages 229-249, October.
    2. Anabela Botelho & Lígia Costa Pinto & Eduarda Fernandes, 2013. "More on the dynamic Vickrey mechanism for multi-unit auctions: an experimental study on the emission permits initial auction," NIMA Working Papers 53, Núcleo de Investigação em Microeconomia Aplicada (NIMA), Universidade do Minho.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    EU ETS; auctioning; grandfathering; banking; Ausubel auction;

    JEL classification:

    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • C9 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments

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