Seems like, every time I turn around, someone else has written about the virtues of auctioning carbon permits: not just auctioning some of them, but auctioning all of them. Kevin Drum of The Washington Monthly has the latest examples.
Climate Auctions: The Meme Spreads
Auctioning carbon permits is the new black.
This article was written 14+ years ago
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Of course we must auction all of them and we must start soon. The effects of climate change stand to completely change our world, harming billions of people detrimentally, and there is no time to debate whether we are going to let some large polluters get by free. Yes this has huge implications for our economy, but it is clear that changes are necessary. Who can argue that billions are suffering due to the current system. Change is necessary, if we want improvements in the quality of life for billions of people. Tipping points are being reached. We must implement a carbon cap, and start ratcheting it down soon!
It has huge positive implications for the economy. If permits are distributed equally to each person in the US, a cap equal to the level of the current year will be sufficient to cause the level to drop rapidly year over year. The income from permit sale will boost the economy of individuals and the nation and will benefit the competitiveness of US energy industry internationally. There are many issues to work out internationally but there are no show stoppers.
This is not a cut and dried issue. What activity constitutes a carbon credit can be manipulated so that projects like building dams or burning old growth trees for wood fired boilers, which alot of the public do not think are “green”, qualify as a credit.
I wonder if environmental groups and green-minded people with the money for it will buy up emissions credits and not use them, with the sole intention of taking pollution credits off the market in order to further reduce pollution and increase its cost. It makes sense to me as a “carbon offset” for driving, flying, etc.