Working Paper

Emissions Trading and Intersectoral Dynamics: Absolute versus Relative Design Schemes



de Vries F, Dijkstra BR & McGinty M (2011) Emissions Trading and Intersectoral Dynamics: Absolute versus Relative Design Schemes. Stirling Economics Discussion Paper, 2011-15.

This paper examines the interdependence between imperfect competition and emis- sions trading in a two-sector (clean and dirty) economy. We compare the welfare implica- tions of an absolute cap-and-trade scheme (permit trading) with a relative intensity-based scheme (credit trading). We nd unambiguously more clean rms in the long run under credit trading. However, neither emissions trading con guration creates the rst-best out- come: there are too few (many) clean rms under permit (credit) trading. Permit trading dominates credit trading in terms of overall welfare at the long run equilibrium, except when policy is relatively lenient. It is also demonstrated that stricter policy does not necessarily induce the clean sector to grow relative to the dirty sector and we determine under what conditions this holds.

emissions trading; imperfect competition; industrial change; pollution control; sectoral dynamics; Pollution Economic aspects; Emissions trading

JEL codes

  • D62: Externalities
  • Q48: Energy: Government Policy
  • Q52: Pollution Control Adoption and Costs; Distributional Effects; Employment Effects
  • Q58: Environmental Economics: Government Policy

Title of seriesStirling Economics Discussion Paper
Number in series2011-15
Publication date online01/07/2011