Feb. 2, 2009: Northeast Greenhouse Gas Allowance Auction Raises $106.5 Million
RGGI helps reduce the region’s greenhouse gas emissions in two ways: first, the steady reduction of the emissions cap will eventually force electric generators to find ways to cut their emissions, primarily through energy efficiency or renewable energy. As the cap decreases, the rising cost of the allowances will effectively add an increasing carbon price to traditional fossil-energy combustion, improving the cost competitiveness of cleaner alternatives. But the auction also yields a new source of revenue for the participating states. Massachusetts, for instance, gained $14.8 million from the latest auction, the bulk of which was directed toward utility energy efficiency programs, heating system upgrades for the homes of families earning low incomes, and a new “green communities” effort. The funds are also supporting a new $5 million training program for insulation installers, energy auditors, and other energy efficiency technicians, creating skilled labor needed for the green-collar job opportunities that are generated by the effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Publication date: 02/02/2009