The heterogeneous impacts of low natural gas prices on consumers and the environment
Joshua Linn and
Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 2018, vol. 89, issue C, 1-28
We show that low natural gas prices increase gas-fired electricity generation, reduce coal-fired electricity generation, and reduce wholesale electricity prices. However, not all regions experience the same degree of coal-to-gas generation switching or electricity price declines. Specifically, regions experiencing more coal-to-gas switching experience smaller electricity price drops. We provide intuition that may explain this pattern. This finding also has environmental and welfare consequences: coal-fired plants emit more pollutants, and therefore regions that benefit more from greater emissions reductions experience lower benefits from declining electricity prices. The finding highlights a mechanism through which a carbon price would have heterogeneous impacts across regions.
Keywords: Electricity prices; Natural gas; Coal; Cost pass-through; Pollution; Shale gas (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q41 Q53 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:jeeman:v:89:y:2018:i:c:p:1-28
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