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Distributive fairness in paying for clean energy infrastructure

Granqvist, Harry and Grover, David (2016) Distributive fairness in paying for clean energy infrastructure. Ecological Economics, 126. pp. 87-97. ISSN 0921-8009

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Identification Number: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2016.02.012


Despite the rapid rise in public expenditure on clean energy infrastructure, there has been little discussion about what constitutes a fair distribution of this new spending burden. We examine four ethical principles that speak to different notions of fairness in the way this burden can and should be shared, and use them to produce three normative criteria for pursuing fairness in the clean energy fiscal policy context. We use these criteria to examine the extent to which fairness is being achieved in large clean energy roll-out programs in Australia, California and the United Kingdom. Maintaining a close focus on providing practical guidance for decision makers in similar policy contexts, we find that fairness is more achievable when program design explicitly considers which households should pay for the program and which should be exempt; when the idea of proportionality guides the distribution of the cost across paying households, and when the interests of low-income households are protected, by ensuring that they share in the benefits of the program, for example.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2016 Elsevier B.V.
Divisions: Grantham Research Institute
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
Date Deposited: 11 May 2016 13:52
Last Modified: 05 Apr 2024 20:06
Funders: Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment

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