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Thirteen Plus One: A Comparison of Global Climate Policy Architectures

39 Pages Posted: 27 Apr 2003  

Joseph E. Aldy

Harvard Kennedy School; National Bureau of Economic Research; Resources for the Future; Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Scott Barrett

Johns Hopkins University - Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS)

Robert N. Stavins

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS); Resources for the Future; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: July 2003

Abstract

We critically review the Kyoto Protocol and thirteen alternative policy architectures for addressing the threat of global climate change. We employ six criteria to evaluate the policy proposals: environmental outcome, dynamic efficiency, cost effectiveness, equity, flexibility in the presence of new information, and incentives for participation and compliance. The Kyoto Protocol does not fare well on a number of criteria, but none of the alternative proposals fare well along all six dimensions. We identify several major themes among the alternative proposals: Kyoto is "too little, too fast"; developing countries should play a more substantial role and receive incentives to participate; implementation should focus on market-based approaches, especially those with price mechanisms; and participation and compliance incentives are inadequately addressed by most proposals. Our investigation reveals tensions among several of the evaluative criteria, such as between environmental outcome and efficiency, and between
cost-effectiveness and incentives for participation and compliance.

Keywords: Policy architecture, Kyoto Protocol, Efficiency, Cost effectiveness, Equity, Participation, Compliance

JEL Classification: Q2, Q3, Q4

Suggested Citation

Aldy, Joseph E. and Barrett, Scott and Stavins, Robert N., Thirteen Plus One: A Comparison of Global Climate Policy Architectures (July 2003). KSG Working Paper Series No. RWP03-012; FEEM Working Paper No. 64.2003. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=385000 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.385000

Joseph E. Aldy

Harvard Kennedy School

79 JFK Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-496-7213 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.hks.harvard.edu/about/faculty-staff-directory/joseph-aldy

National Bureau of Economic Research

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Resources for the Future

79 JFK Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-496-7213 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.hks.harvard.edu/about/faculty-staff-directory/joseph-aldy

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Scott Barrett

Johns Hopkins University - Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) ( email )

1740 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States
202-663-5761 (Phone)
202-663-5769 (Fax)

Robert N. Stavins (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-1820 (Phone)
617-496-3783 (Fax)

Resources for the Future

1616 P Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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