What Do Emissions Markets Deliver and to Whom? Evidence from Southern California's NOx Trading Program
A perceived advantage of cap-and-trade programs over more prescriptive environmental regulation is that enhanced compliance flexibility and cost effectiveness can make more stringent emissions reductions politically feasible. However, increased compliance flexibility can also result in an inequitable distribution of pollution. We investigate these issues in the context of Southern California's RECLAIM program. We match facilities in RECLAIM with similar California facilities also located in non-attainment areas. Our results indicate that emissions fell approximately 24 percent, on average, at RECLAIM facilities relative to our counterfactual. Furthermore, we find that observed changes in emissions do not vary significantly with neighborhood demographic characteristics.
We would like to thank Barbara Bamberger, Lucas Davis, John DiNardo, Justine Hastings, Matt Kahn, Patrick Kline, Justin McCrary, Mushfiq Mobarak, Steven Redding, Randall Walsh, and seminar participants at the University of California Energy Institute, Yale University, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Iowa State University, Harvard University, Dartmouth College, Texas A&M University, Camp Resources, POWER, and the University of Pittsburgh for comments. We thank Gray Kimbrough for excellent research assistance. We also thank Darryl Look at CA ARB and Danny Luong at SCAQMD for assistance with accessing data. All authors thank the University of California Energy Institute for generous research support during this project. The views expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Meredith Fowlie & Stephen P. Holland & Erin T. Mansur, 2012. "What Do Emissions Markets Deliver and to Whom? Evidence from Southern California's NOx Trading Program," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 965-93, April. citation courtesy of