Articles and Books

The Costs of Going Green

Categorized Under: Climate



Published in the June 2009 issue of Public Utilities Fortnightly by Steven Fine and Elliot Roseman of ICF International. How will CO2 legislation affect power generation choices and consumers’ cost of power?  As Congress considers sweeping energy legislation, this article addresses these critical questions. ICF divides the market into groups, and shows that carbon prices have to be substantial before changing the dispatch of existing plants. With regard to new plants, the threshold is substantially lower (costs of about $20 per ton change the type of capacity).

We must understand these tradeoffs to make optimal plans for generation and hit profitability targets. We also show that the impact on consumers depends on whether the state is traditionally regulated or competitive, and how often gas is on the margin.  The consumer impact could range from 10-20 percent of their bills. This is no surprise as a tradeoff for the benefits of reducing greenhouse gases and other emissions, but keeping those costs in balance is key.

Authored By

  • Steve Fine

    Vice PresidentICF International

    Steve Fine is an expert on environmental markets and has led numerous multistakeholder engagements, including the Edison Electric Institute, U.S. Climate Action Partnership, Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), and Clean Energy Group. His work has concentrated on evaluating the economics of conventional and renewable energy resources within the context of developing environmental regulations. He was an invited panelist to a U.S. Senate roundtable discussion on the future of 3P and 4P legislation conducted by Senators Carper and Alexander.

    Mr. Fine has an M.A. in Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a B.A. from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

  • Eliott Roseman

    Vice PresidentICF International

    A senior advisor with 30 years of energy industry experience, Elliot Roseman has expertise in policy analysis, strategic planning, regulatory and legislative strategy, project development, and financial analysis. He supports clients in evaluating energy and electric transmission opportunities, analyzing markets, and developing regulatory and business policies. His experience includes developing business, policy, and regulatory strategies; evaluating potential impacts of specific transactions; and conducting project due diligence.

    Mr. Roseman has managed major policy assignments for private and public utilities, independent power generators, transmission developers, multilateral institutions, regulators, and government officials. He is an adjunct professor at George Washington University, teaching a graduate course on “Worldwide Energy Challenges.”

Insight Details

Published: Jun 1, 2009
Authors: ,
Source: Public Utilities Fortnightly

© Copyright 1992–2014 ICF International, Inc. All Rights Reserved.