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Emission Trading with Fiscal Externalities: The Case for a Common Carbon Tax for the Non-ETS Emissions in the EU

Jørgen Andersen () and Mads Greaker ()

Environmental & Resource Economics, 2018, vol. 71, issue 3, No 10, 803-823

Abstract: Abstract A government is fiscally constrained if it is unable to raise sufficient tax revenue to finance the first-best level of public spending. When involved in emission trading, a fiscally constrained government will potentially seek to close its fiscal gap through emission permit sales. This fiscal incentive therefore generates a fiscal externality in the permit market that is endogenous to the extent of fiscal constrainedness among the participating countries. Our theory explains how, and when, fiscal externalities may be expected to arise. Moreover, we show that in a permit market equilibrium with fiscal externalities, the initial allocation of emission permits between countries will affect: (1) the price of emission permits, (2) the global distribution of abatement effort, and (3) total greenhouse gas mitigation costs. This is contrary to the textbook model of emission permit markets. Our findings are especially relevant for the EU which is about to allow for trading in emission rights between EU member countries for all emissions outside the European Emissions Trading System.

Keywords: Emission permit trade; Fiscal constraints; Fiscal incentive; Carbon tax (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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DOI: 10.1007/s10640-017-0184-x

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