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An Analysis of Allowance Banking in the EU ETS

Author

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  • Zaklan, Aleksandar
  • Ellerman, Denny
  • Valero, Vanessa

Abstract

The existence of some 2 billion unused EU Allowances (EUAs) at the end of Phase II of the EU s Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) has sparked considerable debate about structural shortcomings of the EU ETS. However, there has been a surprising lack of interest in considering the accumulation of EUAs in light of the theory of intertemporal permit trading, i.e. allowance banking. In this paper we adapt basic banking theory to the case of a linearly declining cap, as is common in greenhouse gas control systems. We show that it is perfectly rational for agents to decrease emissions beyond the constraint imposed by the cap initially, accumulating an allowance bank and then drawing it down in the interest of minimizing abatement cost over time. Having laid out the theory, we carry out a set of simulations for a reasonable range of key parameters, geared to the EU ETS, to illustrate the effects of intertemporal optimization of abatement decisions on optimal time paths of emissions and allowance prices. We conclude that bank accumulation as the result of intertemporal abatement cost optimization should be considered at least a partial explanation when evaluating the current discrepancy between the cap and observed emissions.

Suggested Citation

  • Zaklan, Aleksandar & Ellerman, Denny & Valero, Vanessa, 2015. "An Analysis of Allowance Banking in the EU ETS," VfS Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 113034, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc15:113034
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kling, Catherine & Rubin, Jonathan, 1997. "Bankable permits for the control of environmental pollution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 101-115, April.
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    9. repec:dau:papers:123456789/10174 is not listed on IDEAS
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Abrell, Jan & Rausch, Sebastian, 2017. "Combining price and quantity controls under partitioned environmental regulation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 145(C), pages 226-242.
    2. Kollenberg, Sascha & Taschini, Luca, 2016. "Emissions trading systems with cap adjustments," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 20-36.
    3. Perino, Grischa & Willner, Maximilian, 2016. "Procrastinating reform: The impact of the market stability reserve on the EU ETS," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 37-52.
    4. Delarue, Erik & Van den Bergh, Kenneth, 2016. "Carbon mitigation in the electric power sector under cap-and-trade and renewables policies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 92(C), pages 34-44.
    5. Carlén, Björn & Dahlqvist, Anna & Mandell, Svante & Marklund, Pelle, 2019. "EU ETS emissions under the cancellation mechanism - Effects of national measures," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 129(C), pages 816-825.
    6. Quemin, Simon & Trotignon, Raphaël, 2021. "Emissions trading with rolling horizons," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 125(C).
    7. Kollenberg, Sascha & Taschini, Luca, 2019. "Dynamic supply adjustment and banking under uncertainty in an emission trading scheme: The market stability reserve," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 213-226.
    8. Xu, Jia & Tan, Xiujie & He, Gang & Liu, Yu, 2019. "Disentangling the drivers of carbon prices in China's ETS pilots — An EEMD approach," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 139(C), pages 1-9.
    9. Yolanda Fernández Fernández & María Angeles Fernández López & David González Hernández & Blanca Olmedillas Blanco, 2018. "Institutional Change and Environment: Lessons from the European Emission Trading System," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 11(4), pages 1-16, March.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • D92 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Intertemporal Firm Choice, Investment, Capacity, and Financing
    • F18 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Environment

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