RGGI sells 24.5 million CO2 allowances

NEW YORK, NY— The nine Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic states participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), the nation’s first market-based regulatory program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, today announced the results of their 17th auction of carbon dioxide (CO2) allowances.

24,589,000 carbon dioxide (CO2) allowances were sold in the auction, held Wednesday, September 5th generating $47.4 million for reinvestment by the RGGI states in energy efficiency, clean and renewable energy, direct bill assistance, and other consumer benefit programs across the region. These investments in the region’s energy future are creating jobs, reducing energy bills, helping businesses become more competitive, accelerating the development of local clean and renewable energy, and limiting the release of harmful pollutants.

Bids for the CO2 allowances ranged from $1.93 to $6.51 per allowance, with a clearing price of $1.93, the minimum reserve price for the auction. Allowances sold represent 65 percent of the 37,949,558 allowances offered for sale by the nine states.

According to the independent market monitor’s report, electricity generators and their corporate affiliates have won 88 percent of CO2 allowances sold in RGGI auctions since 2008.

“RGGI proceeds invested in energy efficiency are reducing energy costs, creating jobs, and strengthening our energy infrastructure,” said Collin O’Mara, Secretary of the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control and Chair of RGGI, Inc. “By working closely with industry partners, critical energy investments are being made today that are enhancing our economic competitiveness for years to come.”

“The RGGI auctions are serving as a model for efficient distribution of allowances for pollution reduction trading programs. The RGGI auction platform effectively provides the market with the carbon allowances needed and after four years, our independent market monitor has never found any evidence of anti-competitive conduct,” said David Littell, a Commissioner of the Maine Public Utilities Commission and Vice-Chair of RGGI, Inc. “Smart investments enabled by the RGGI auctions are creating jobs and returning significant cost savings to our region’s business and residential consumers.”

The RGGI states are currently conducting a comprehensive program review to ensure RGGI’s continued success.

The next RGGI auction is scheduled for December 5, 2012.