Selective Reporting and the Social Cost of Carbon

43 Pages Posted: 8 Aug 2015 Last revised: 10 Aug 2015

See all articles by Tomas Havranek

Tomas Havranek

Charles University in Prague; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Zuzana Irsova

Charles University in Prague

Karel Janda

Charles University in Prague - CERGE-EI (Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute)

David Zilberman

University of California, Berkeley - Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: August 1, 2015

Abstract

We examine potential selective reporting (publication bias) in the literature on the social cost of carbon (SCC) by conducting a meta-analysis of 809 estimates of the SCC reported in 101 studies. Our results indicate that estimates for which the 95% confidence interval includes zero are less likely to be reported than estimates excluding negative values of the SCC, which might create an upward bias in the literature. The evidence for selective reporting is stronger for studies published in peer-reviewed journals than for unpublished papers. We show that the findings are not driven by the asymmetry of the confidence intervals surrounding the SCC and are robust to controlling for various characteristics of study design and to alternative definitions of confidence intervals. Our estimates of the mean reported SCC corrected for the selective reporting bias range between USD 0 and 134 per ton of carbon at 2010 prices for emission year 2015.

Keywords: Social cost of carbon, climate policy, integrated assessment models, meta-analysis, selective reporting, publication bias

JEL Classification: C83, Q54

Suggested Citation

Havranek, Tomas and Irsova, Zuzana and Janda, Karel and Zilberman, David, Selective Reporting and the Social Cost of Carbon (August 1, 2015). CAMA Working Paper No. 28/2015, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2640810 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2640810

Tomas Havranek

Charles University in Prague ( email )

Celetná 13
Praha 1, 116 36
Czech Republic

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Zuzana Irsova

Charles University in Prague ( email )

Celetná 13
Praha 1, 116 36
Czech Republic

Karel Janda (Contact Author)

Charles University in Prague - CERGE-EI (Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute) ( email )

P.O. Box 882
7 Politickych veznu
Prague 1, 111 21
Czech Republic
+422 240 05 223 (Phone)
+422 242 11 374 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.cerge-ei.cz

David Zilberman

University of California, Berkeley - Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics ( email )

Berkeley, CA 94720
United States

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