Report Finds that RGGI Has Generated Significant Economic Benefits in Participating States
On April 30, 2012, Environmental Northeast released a report finding that the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) has generated significant economic benefits in participating states, and those states could benefit even more under an improved program.
According to the report, proceeds from RGGI allowance auctions are reinvested in energy-efficiency programs, which generate direct employment. In addition, savings on electricity at the household and wholesale levels free up money that can be spent in local economies rather than on imported power. The report finds that through April 2012, the auctions of allowances have generated just over $1 billion in revenue. This puts the program on track to add over $1.7 billion in net value to state economies. The report also projects that this increase in growth will generate over 17,100 job-years of employment across the states' economies.
The report indicates that if the member states take action to amend the program to account for decreased emissions by resetting the cap at current emissions levels, and use revenue to support clean energy and consumer programs, RGGI could generate an additional $4.7 billion from 2012 to 2020 to invest in programs that could add $11.6 billion in value to state economies and over 82,000 job-years.