Consignment Auctioning of Carbon Allowances in Cap-and-Trade Program Design

Carbon pricing is increasingly used to reduce carbon emissions through carbon taxes and cap-and-trade programs, and the most important new development in carbon pricing is China’s national carbon market. This research note discusses how California’s “consignment auctioning” approach to allowance distribution provides an option for Chinese policymakers to introduce auctioning while cushioning economic effects on covered entities through free allocation.