Michael Grubb

Michael Grubb is Visiting Professor, Climate Change and Energy Policy, at Imperial College, London, and Senior Research Associate at the Department of Applied Economics, Cambridge University. He is also half-time Associated Director of Policy at the UK Carbon Trust. He has been a Lead Author for several reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) addressing the economic, technological and social aspects of limiting greenhouse gas emissions and has advised a number of governments, companies and international studies on climate change policy. He is editor-in-chief of the journal Climate Policy and is on the editorial board of Energy Policy. His contact email is: michael.grubb@imperial.ac.uk

Papers Published in World Economics:

The Economics of the Kyoto Protocol
Author: Michael Grubb

This paper surveys economic aspects of the Kyoto Protocol, the Treaty adopted to control emissions of the greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change. The first part focuses upon the structural aspects of the agreement, with particular attention to the long-term conception of the Treaty and its use of market-oriented instruments unprecedented in an international treaty of this scope. The second part then examines the actual commitments adopted for the first period, and the impact of US withdrawal upon the economics of these commitments as mediated through the ‘flexible mechanisms’. It is noted that the emerging behaviour of states under Kyoto is very different from that assumed in economic modeling studies—countries are focusing first upon domestic action and will resort to the mechanisms mainly as a fallback option to secure compliance, not as a route to minimizing costs irrespective of other considerations. This may have important implications for understanding the practical economics of designing international market mechanisms, and for the next steps that might be considered under Kyoto.

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