IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/oxf/oxcrwp/168.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Second-Best Renewable Subsidies To De-Carbonize The Economy: Commitment And The Green Paradox

Author

Listed:
  • Rick Van der Ploeg
  • Armon Rezai

Abstract

Climate change must deal with two market failures: global warming and learning by doing in renewable energy production. The first-best policy consists of an aggressive renewables subsidy in the near term and a gradually rising and falling carbon tax. Given that global carbon taxes remain elusive, policy makers might have to rely on a second-best subsidy only. With credible commitment the second-best subsidy is higher than the social benefit of learning to cut the transition time and peak warming close to first-best levels at the cost of higher fossil fuel use in the short run (weak Green Paradox). Without commitment the second-best subsidy is set to the social benefit of learning. It generates smaller weak Green Paradox effects, but the transition to the carbon-free takes longer and cumulative carbon emissions are higher. Under first best and second best with pre-commitment peak warming is 2.1 - 2.3 °C, under second best without commitment 3.5°C, and without any policy 5.1°C above pre-industrial levels. Not being able to commit yields a welfare loss of 95% of initial GDP compared to first best. Being able to commit brings this figure down to 7%.

Suggested Citation

  • Rick Van der Ploeg & Armon Rezai, 2016. "Second-Best Renewable Subsidies To De-Carbonize The Economy: Commitment And The Green Paradox," OxCarre Working Papers 168, Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford.
  • Handle: RePEc:oxf:oxcrwp:168
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:11d05d45-22b6-45e7-92dc-5d9707545da5
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Grimaud, André & Lafforgue, Gilles & Magné, Bertrand, 2011. "Climate change mitigation options and directed technical change: A decentralized equilibrium analysis," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 938-962.
    2. Kenneth Rogoff, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-1189.
    3. Ackerman, Frank & Stanton, Elizabeth A., 2012. "Climate risks and carbon prices: Revising the social cost of carbon," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 6, pages 1-25.
    4. Daron Acemoglu & Philippe Aghion & Leonardo Bursztyn & David Hemous, 2012. "The Environment and Directed Technical Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(1), pages 131-166, February.
    5. Dieter Helm & Cameron Hepburn & Richard Mash, 2003. "Credible Carbon Policy," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(3), pages 438-450.
    6. Bovenberg, A Lans & Smulders, Sjak A, 1996. "Transitional Impacts of Environmental Policy in an Endogenous Growth Model," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 37(4), pages 861-893, November.
    7. Kalkuhl, Matthias & Edenhofer, Ottmar & Lessmann, Kai, 2013. "Renewable energy subsidies: Second-best policy or fatal aberration for mitigation?," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 217-234.
    8. Valentina Bosetti, Carlo Carraro and Marzio Galeotti, 2006. "The Dynamics of Carbon and Energy Intensity in a Model of Endogenous Technical Change," The Energy Journal, International Association for Energy Economics, vol. 0(Special I), pages 191-206.
    9. Robert J. Barro & David B. Gordon, 2019. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural Rate Model," Credit and Capital Markets, Credit and Capital Markets, vol. 52(4), pages 505-525.
    10. Felix Creutzig & Rainer Mühlhoff & Julia Römer, 2012. "One Planet Mobility - Transforming Cities towards Low-Carbon Mobility," Working Papers 1, Department of Climate Change Economics, TU Berlin, revised Feb 2012.
    11. van der Ploeg, Frederick, 2016. "Second-best carbon taxation in the global economy: The Green Paradox and carbon leakage revisited," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 85-105.
    12. Frederick van der Ploeg & Aart de Zeeuw, 2013. "Climate Policy and Catastrophic Change: Be Prepared and Avert Risk," CEEES Paper Series CE3S-02/13, European University at St. Petersburg, Department of Economics.
    13. Mattauch, Linus & Creutzig, Felix & Edenhofer, Ottmar, 2015. "Avoiding carbon lock-in: Policy options for advancing structural change," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 49-63.
    14. Fischer, Carolyn & Parry, Ian W. H. & Pizer, William A., 2003. "Instrument choice for environmental protection when technological innovation is endogenous," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 523-545, May.
    15. Popp, David, 2004. "ENTICE: endogenous technological change in the DICE model of global warming," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 742-768, July.
    16. Stern,Nicholas, 2007. "The Economics of Climate Change," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521700801, June.
    17. Armon Rezai & Frederick Van der Ploeg, 2016. "Intergenerational Inequality Aversion, Growth, and the Role of Damages: Occam's Rule for the Global Carbon Tax," Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, University of Chicago Press, vol. 3(2), pages 493-522.
    18. Simon Dietz & Nicholas Stern, 2014. "Endogenous growth, convexity of damages and climate risk: how Nordhaus� framework supports deep cuts in carbon emissions," GRI Working Papers 159, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
    19. Tian Tang & David Popp, 2014. "The Learning Process and Technological Change in Wind Power: Evidence from China's CDM Wind Projects," CESifo Working Paper Series 4705, CESifo.
    20. Tian Tang & David Popp, 2014. "The Learning Process and Technological Change in Wind Power: Evidence from China's CDM Wind Projects," NBER Working Papers 19921, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    21. Fischer, Carolyn & Newell, Richard G., 2008. "Environmental and technology policies for climate mitigation," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 142-162, March.
    22. William Nordhaus, 2014. "Estimates of the Social Cost of Carbon: Concepts and Results from the DICE-2013R Model and Alternative Approaches," Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, University of Chicago Press, vol. 1(1), pages 000.
    23. Reyer Gerlagh, 2011. "Too Much Oil," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 57(1), pages 79-102, March.
    24. Kenneth J. Arrow, 1962. "The Economic Implications of Learning by Doing," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 29(3), pages 155-173.
    25. Derek Lemoine & Christian Traeger, 2014. "Watch Your Step: Optimal Policy in a Tipping Climate," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 6(1), pages 137-166, February.
    26. 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.
    27. Hübler, Michael & Baumstark, Lavinia & Leimbach, Marian & Edenhofer, Ottmar & Bauer, Nico, 2012. "An integrated assessment model with endogenous growth," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 118-131.
    28. Manne, Alan & Richels, Richard, 2004. "The impact of learning-by-doing on the timing and costs of CO2 abatement," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 603-619, July.
    29. Edenhofer, Ottmar & Bauer, Nico & Kriegler, Elmar, 2005. "The impact of technological change on climate protection and welfare: Insights from the model MIND," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2-3), pages 277-292, August.
    30. Armon Rezai & Duncan Foley & Lance Taylor, 2012. "Global warming and economic externalities," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 49(2), pages 329-351, February.
    31. Mikhail Golosov & John Hassler & Per Krusell & Aleh Tsyvinski, 2014. "Optimal Taxes on Fossil Fuel in General Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 82(1), pages 41-88, January.
    32. Jouvet, Pierre-André & Schumacher, Ingmar, 2012. "Learning-by-doing and the costs of a backstop for energy transition and sustainability," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(C), pages 122-132.
    33. Tsur, Yacov & Zemel, Amos, 2005. "Scarcity, growth and R&D," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 484-499, May.
    34. Hans-Werner Sinn, 2008. "Public policies against global warming: a supply side approach," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 15(4), pages 360-394, August.
    35. Hart, Rob, 2008. "The timing of taxes on CO2 emissions when technological change is endogenous," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 194-212, March.
    36. 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 473-491, June.
    37. Alberth, Stephan & Hope, Chris, 2007. "Climate modelling with endogenous technical change: Stochastic learning and optimal greenhouse gas abatement in the PAGE2002 model," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 1795-1807, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. van der Ploeg, Frederick & Rezai, Armon, 2017. "Cumulative emissions, unburnable fossil fuel, and the optimal carbon tax," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 116(C), pages 216-222.
    2. Maria Belfiori & Armon Rezai, 2019. "Optimal Climate Policy: Making do with the taxes we have," 2019 Meeting Papers 1029, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    3. Rick van der Ploeg & Armon Rezai, 2020. "Optimal Carbon Pricing in General Equilibrium Revisited: Damages, Depreciation, and Discounting," CESifo Working Paper Series 8782, CESifo.
    4. van der Ploeg, Frederick, 2016. "Second-best carbon taxation in the global economy: The Green Paradox and carbon leakage revisited," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 85-105.
    5. van der Ploeg, Frederick, 2020. "Race to burn the last ton of carbon and the risk of stranded assets," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    6. van der Ploeg, Frederick & Rezai, Armon, 2020. "The risk of policy tipping and stranded carbon assets," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 100(C).
    7. Eichner, Thomas & Pethig, Rüdiger, 2019. "EU-type carbon regulation and the waterbed effect of green energy promotion," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 656-679.
    8. Shayegh, Soheil & Sanchez, Daniel L., 2021. "Impact of market design on cost-effectiveness of renewable portfolio standards," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 136(C).
    9. Najm, Sarah & Matsumoto, Ken'ichi, 2020. "Does renewable energy substitute LNG international trade in the energy transition?," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(C).
    10. Michael Grubb & Rutger-Jan Lange & Nicolas Cerkez & Pablo Salas & Jean-Francois Mercure & Ida Sognnaes, 2020. "Taking Time Seriously: Implications for Optimal Climate Policy," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 20-083/VI, Tinbergen Institute.
    11. Najm, Sarah, 2019. "The green paradox and budgetary institutions," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 133(C).
    12. Kalkuhl, Matthias & Steckel, Jan Christoph & Edenhofer, Ottmar, 2020. "All or nothing: Climate policy when assets can become stranded," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 100(C).

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Armon Rezai & Frederick Van Der Ploeg, 2017. "Abandoning Fossil Fuel: How Fast and How Much," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 85(S2), pages 16-44, December.
    2. Grimaud, André & Lafforgue, Gilles & Magné, Bertrand, 2011. "Climate change mitigation options and directed technical change: A decentralized equilibrium analysis," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 938-962.
    3. Tunç Durmaz & Fred Schroyen, 2020. "Evaluating Carbon Capture And Storage In A Climate Model With Endogenous Technical Change," Climate Change Economics (CCE), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 11(01), pages 1-47, February.
    4. Shiell, Leslie & Lyssenko, Nikita, 2014. "Climate policy and induced R&D: How great is the effect?," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 279-294.
    5. van der Ploeg, Frederick & Withagen, Cees, 2012. "Is there really a green paradox?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 64(3), pages 342-363.
    6. Popp, David & Newell, Richard G. & Jaffe, Adam B., 2010. "Energy, the Environment, and Technological Change," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, in: Bronwyn H. Hall & Nathan Rosenberg (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 0, pages 873-937, Elsevier.
    7. van der Ploeg, Frederick & Withagen, Cees, 2012. "Is there really a green paradox?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 64(3), pages 342-363.
    8. Gerlagh, Reyer & Kverndokk, Snorre & Rosendahl, Knut Einar, 2014. "The optimal time path of clean energy R&D policy when patents have finite lifetime," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 2-19.
    9. Elizabeth Baldwin & Yongyang Cai & Karlygash Kuralbayeva, 2018. "To Build or Not to Build? Capital Stocks and Climate Policy," CESifo Working Paper Series 6884, CESifo.
    10. van der Ploeg, Frederick & Rezai, Armon, 2019. "The agnostic's response to climate deniers: Price carbon!," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 111(C), pages 70-84.
    11. Richard S J Tol, 2018. "The Economic Impacts of Climate Change," Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 12(1), pages 4-25.
    12. Frederick Ploeg, 2015. "Untapped fossil fuel and the green paradox: a classroom calibration of the optimal carbon tax," Environmental Economics and Policy Studies, Springer;Society for Environmental Economics and Policy Studies - SEEPS, vol. 17(2), pages 185-210, April.
    13. Mattauch, Linus & Creutzig, Felix & Edenhofer, Ottmar, 2015. "Avoiding carbon lock-in: Policy options for advancing structural change," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 49-63.
    14. Baldwin, Elizabeth & Cai, Yongyang & Kuralbayeva, Karlygash, 2020. "To build or not to build? Capital stocks and climate policy∗," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 100(C).
    15. Amigues, Jean-Pierre & Moreaux, Michel, 2016. "Pollution Abatement v.s. Energy Efficiency Improvements," TSE Working Papers 16-626, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
    16. Wei Jin & ZhongXiang Zhang, 2018. "Capital Accumulation, Green Paradox, and Stranded Assets: An Endogenous Growth Perspective," Working Papers 2018.33, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    17. Amigues, Jean-Pierre & Moreaux, Michel, 2019. "Energy Conversion Rate Improvements, Pollution Abatement Efforts and Energy Mix: The Transition toward the Green Economy under a Pollution Stock Constraint," TSE Working Papers 19-994, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
    18. Maria Belfiori & Armon Rezai, 2019. "Optimal Climate Policy: Making do with the taxes we have," 2019 Meeting Papers 1029, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    19. Mare Sarr & Joëlle Noailly, 2017. "Innovation, Diffusion, Growth and the Environment: Taking Stock and Charting New Directions," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 66(3), pages 393-407, March.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    first best; second best; commitment; Markov-perfect; Ramsey growth; carbon tax; renewables subsidy; learning by doing; directed technical change;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • Q51 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Valuation of Environmental Effects
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oxf:oxcrwp:168. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Melis Boya). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/oxcaruk.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.