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Auction Design for Selling CO2 Emission Allowances Under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative

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Abstract

This report develops recommendations on the most appropriate design for auctions of Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) CO2 allowances. The research was conducted in two phases. Phase 1 included the initial preparation of an annotated bibliography and a round of experiments to investigate the performance of a number of auction types considered to be likely candidates for use in a CO2 allowance auction. The main auction types considered were the sealed-bid, increasing-price sequential (English clock), and decreasing-price sequential (Dutch) auction forms. We also examined whether sealed-bid auctions should use the pay-as-bid (discriminatory) or uniform-price rules. Phase 2 experiments examined auction performance for expanded set of performance measures and in a richer institutional setting. The auction formats were compared with respect to price discovery, that is, ensuring that the price of allowances at auction reflects their market value, and in limiting collusive behavior. We also examined the effect of reserve prices and allowance banking and did more analysis of how the auction combines with secondary (or spot) markets. We looked at the effects of allowing participation in the auction by brokers or other traders not needing allowances for compliance and of combining auctions with “grandfathering†of some allowances for free to generators. In addition, we performed some experiments to look at so-called “hoarding behavior†and the effects of different mechanisms that have been proposed to limit hoarding. In particular, our experiments examined whether holding auctions with participation limited to generators can reduce the effect of hoarding behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles A. Holt & William Shobe & Dallas Burtraw & Karen Palmer & Jacob K. Goeree, 2007. "Auction Design for Selling CO2 Emission Allowances Under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative," Reports 2007-03, Center for Economic and Policy Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:vac:report:rpt07-03
    Note: Research conducted for the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority The additional file is an addendum to the report delivered in April 2008.
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    File URL: http://econ.ccps.virginia.edu/RePEc_docs/ceps_docs/rggi_auction_final.pdf
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    File URL: http://econ.ccps.virginia.edu/RePEc_docs/ceps_docs/Auction_Design_Addendum_April08.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    climate change; allowance; carbon dioxide; co2; RGGI; emission markets;

    JEL classification:

    • Q4 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy
    • C9 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior

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