Reaping a Bonus From Cap-and-Trade
Not only has the RGGI program paid for itself, it also reduced CO2 emissions by 6%. Of course, some of this success was due to the economic downtown, but overall it is a good start and proof that systems like this can be put in place without catastrophic results to the economy.
And as a useful lesson, consider New Jersey, which spent the program funds on budget shortfalls instead of energy efficiency programs, and then promptly dropped out when they didn’t see any benefits. Stupid, stupid…
So while the program led to a slight rise in electricity rates - less than 1 percent — consumers in those states ended up seeing lower bills over all as their demand declined.
“All told,” the study said,” electricity consumers over all - households, businesses, government users and others - enjoy a net gain of nearly $1.1 billion as their overall electric bills drop over time. This reflects average savings of $25 for residential consumers, $181 for commercial consumers and $2,493 for industrial consumers over the study period.”