By Gregory N. Bartos
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Extra resources for Economics of policy options to address climate change
PANELISTS RATED ESTIMATES OF COSTS OF ACTIONS TO ADDRESS CLIMATE CHANGE AS MORE USEFUL THAN ESTIMATES OF BENEFITS, CITING UNCERTAINTIES ASSOCIATED WITH FUTURE IMPACTS Citing uncertainties associated with the potential future impacts of climate change, and the difficulties of estimating their economic impacts, panelists rated cost estimates from integrated assessment models as more useful for informing congressional decision making than benefit estimates. While panelists identified challenges in estimating costs such as predicting future technological development and additional costs associated with inefficient policy designs, 10 panelists stated that the estimates of costs were quite or extremely useful, whereas the majority of panelists said that estimates of benefits were only somewhat or moderately useful.
II for additional information on this topic). In addition, seven of the eight panelists that prefer a hybrid policy believe that the price of the safety valve should increase over time, and the majority of panelists said that the safety valve should be reevaluated periodically based on new information. 5 percent plus inflation annually, and that the government should reevaluate the stringency of the policy every 5 to 10 years based on new information. Another panelist said that the safety valve provision could be abandoned altogether after a periodic review of the adequacy of the policy and its costs.
Finally, while some panelists said that the United States should proceed cautiously if it acts unilaterally, the majority of panelists agreed that it should establish a price on greenhouse gas emissions as 18 Gregory N. Bartos soon as possible regardless of the extent to which other countries adopt similar policies. ALL OF THE PANELISTS AGREED THAT THE CONGRESS SHOULD CONSIDER ESTABLISHING A PRICE ON GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS, AND THE MAJORITY RECOMMENDED COMPLEMENTARY POLICIES All of the panelists agreed that the Congress should consider a market- based mechanism to establish a price on greenhouse gas emissions and supported implementation of the policy by 2015.