February 27, 2014, was the closing date for a 90-day public comment period (extended 30 days from an original 60-day period) on a federal inter-agency group’s updated estimate of the “social cost of carbon.” Proposed in a November 26, 2013, Federal Register from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the new estimate projected for 2015 is $37 per metric ton, up from a projected 2015 value of $24 that was part of the cost estimates issued in 2010. The carbon-cost estimate is used by federal regulators to predict economic benefits of regulations requiring reductions of emissions of carbon dioxide, methane, and other “greenhouse gases” involved in global climate change.
Following are some sources of information on the social cost of carbon and the new estimate.
OMB information on the new proposed cost value is available from the following: “Refining Estimates of the Social Cost of Carbon,” White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) News Release, 11/1/13, online at http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2013/11/01/refining-estimates-social-cost-carbon.
An explanation of how the social cost of carbon is estimated and used in the regulatory process is available in “Estimating the ‘Social Cost of Carbon’ for Regulatory Impact Analysis,” Resources for the Future Weekly Policy Commentary, 11/8/10, online at http://www.rff.org/Publications/WPC/Pages/Estimating-the-Social-Cost-of-Carbon-for-Regulatory-Impact-Analysis.aspx.
The two recent Federal Register notices from OMB on the new estimate are, “Technical Support Document: Technical Update of the Social Cost of Carbon for Regulatory Impact Analysis Under Executive Order No. 12866,” 11/26/13 and 1/27/14; the Federal Register is available online at https://www.federalregister.gov/.
Information from the U.S. EPA about the social cost of carbon is available online at http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/EPAactivities/economics/scc.html.