In the NewsBloomberg LawJanuary 21, 2021

Key to Biden Climate Agenda: The Social Cost of Carbon Explained

Biden said he wants the group to put out an interim social cost that ensures agencies are accounting for the full costs of pollution from carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, “including climate risk, environmental justice, and intergenerational equity.” In June, the Government Accountability Office said the EPA under Trump had arrived at its lower estimate because, among other things, it only considered domestic costs, rather than global costs. It is almost certain that the Biden team will revert to the government’s pre-Trump way of calculating the social cost of carbon. Michael Greenstone, an economics professor at the University of Chicago, said reverting to the Obama-era calculations would yield a social cost of carbon of $125 per ton, assuming it took into account lower interest rates in recent years.