Published September 30, 2008 09:25 AM

Demand high for pollution credits

59 bidders take part in Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative auction; state joins next auction Dec. 17

ALBANY — If the law of supply and demand holds true, then the nation's first auction of pollution rights to combat global warming was a success.

New York state was not ready for the inaugural auction of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, but six other states sold off rights last week to about 12.5 tons of carbon dioxide, a known greenhouse gas.

Demand was high, with 59 bidders seeking nearly four times as many allowances as were offered.

Other bidders included financial institutions and environmental groups, according to Peter Iwanowicz, director of the state's Climate Change Office.

He said New York will be ready for the next RGGI auction, slated for Dec. 17. Under the program, which has grown to cover 10 states since former Gov. George Pataki proposed it five years ago, power plants must begin in 2009 to use RGGI credits to cover carbon dioxide emissions. In 2015, the program will reduce the available credits by 10 percent to force down emissions.]

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