First RGGI auction today, results to be posted Monday

Michael Giberson

The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative held their first CO2 permit auction today. At the WSJ Environmental Capital blog, Keith Johnson said RGGI “is more likely to start with a whimper than a bang,” and asks “Will it work?”

Johnson reports:

RGGI’s first auction today, of about 12.5 million emissions permits, isn’t attracting a lot of interest. For starters, that’s because the program’s overseers allocated more pollution permits than power companies need to meet their obligations. That means there’s no red-hot demand to get permits. At the same time, utilities have three years to start really tightening their belts, so there isn’t a lot of urgency to get emissions credits in the bank.

I can imagine the the program designers were interested in not beginning with a bang. After all, if you toss industry into a pot of boiling water, it will hop right out.