Environmental and Economic Criteria for Reducing GHG Emissions Analyzed in Analysis Group White Paper
August 26, 2020
At the request of the Public Generating Pool, an association of eleven publicly owned electric utilities in the US Pacific Northwest, and PacifiCorp, an owner of multiple electric utilities in the Western US, Analysis Group Vice President Joseph Cavicchi and Principal Todd Schatzki, evaluated and analyzed the accounting necessary to monitor compliance with environmental regulations that focus on reducing atmospheric emissions of carbon dioxide in the state of Washington and other Western US states.
Mr. Cavicchi and Dr. Schatzki considered the environmental and economic criteria applicable to greenhouse gas regulatory compliance and applied these criteria to resource- and flow-based accounting frameworks. They found that a resource-based compliance proposal can achieve policy environmental objectives, support well-functioning electricity markets and the integration of non-emitting resources, facilitate cost-effective achievement of climate policy objectives, and provide an administratively efficient and effective system for achieving compliance. In contrast, they also found that flow-based accounting compliance proposals that would seek to match the “flow” of electricity generated by particular resources with consumer consumption at very granular time intervals (e.g., hourly) are impractical, likely to be very costly, and unnecessary for ensuring that climate policy objectives are achieved.