The Unequal Economic Consequences of Carbon Pricing - Diego Känzig
Speaker : Diego Känzig (Northwestern University)
Place: room T209
This paper studies how carbon pricing affects emissions, economic aggregates and inequality. Exploiting institutional features of the European carbon market and high-frequency data, I identify a carbon policy shock. I find that a tighter carbon pricing regime leads to a significant increase in energy prices, a persistent fall in emissions and an uptick in green innovation. This comes at the cost of a temporary fall in economic activity, which is not borne equally across society: poorer households lower their consumption significantly while richer households are less affected. Not only are the poor more exposed because of their higher energy share, they also experience a larger fall in their income. These indirect, general-equilibrium effects turn out to be quantitatively important. My results suggest that targeted fiscal policy can reduce the economic costs of carbon pricing without compromising emission reductions.