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Penn State Dickinson Law

Climate change

Comparative and Foreign Law

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The Carbon Price Equivalent: A Metric For Comparing Climate Change Mitigation Efforts Across Jurisdictions, Gabriel Weil Jan 2021

The Carbon Price Equivalent: A Metric For Comparing Climate Change Mitigation Efforts Across Jurisdictions, Gabriel Weil

Dickinson Law Review (2017-Present)

Climate change presents a global commons problem: Emissions reductions on the scale needed to meet global targets do not pass a domestic cost-benefit test in most countries. To give national governments ample incentive to pursue deep decarbonization, mutual interstate coercion will be necessary. Many proposed tools of coercive climate diplomacy would require a onedimensional metric for comparing the stringency of climate change mitigation policy packages across jurisdictions. This article proposes and defends such a metric: the carbon price equivalent. There is substantial variation in the set of climate change mitigation policy instruments implemented by different countries. Nonetheless, the consequences of …