Identifying Benefits of Regulatory Actions

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Submission at the Workshop on Risk Assessment in Regulatory Policy Analysis (RIA), Session 6, Mexico, 9-11 June 2014. Further information is available at http://www.oecd.org/gov/regulatory-policy/

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Identifying Benefits of Regulatory Actions

  1. 1. Identifying  Benefits  of  Regulatory  Actions   According  to  the  World  Health  Organization,  “Global  transport  emissions  comprised   an  estimated  23%  of  direct  CO2  emissions  in  2008,  with  land  transport  accounting   for  the  largest  share  (16%)”1.         A  number  of  options  have  been  indentified  to  reduce  CO2  emissions  from   automobiles.    They  range  from  changes  vehicle  and  engine  size  to  different  fuels  to   abandoning  the  internal  combustion  engine.     Risk  analysts  and  regulatory  organizations  are  recognizing  the  importance  of   including  both  co-­‐benefits  (additional  benefits  that  will  accrue  when  a  target  risk  is   mitigated)  and  risk  tradeoffs  (dis-­‐benefits  that  will  occur  from  a  risk  management   intervention)  in  regulatory  impact  analyses.    The  US  Office  of  Management  and   Budget  Circular  A-­‐4  reminds  analysts  to  “[I]dentify  the  expected  undesirable  side-­‐ effects  and  ancillary  benefits  of  the  proposed  regulatory  action  and  the  alternatives.   These  should  be  added  to  the  direct  benefits  and  costs  as  appropriate.       In  the  table  below  are  4  options  that  have  been  put  forth  to  reduce  CO2  emissions   from  automobiles.    For  each  option  identify  potential  the  primary  benefit  and  any   co-­‐benefits  of  the  technology  and  possible  risk  tradeoffs  that  would  count  as  “costs”   of  the  technology.         Option   Benefits/Co-­benefits   Risk  Tradeoffs     Increased  fuel  efficiency   through  reduced  vehicle   and  engine  size           Switch  to  diesel  fuel               Use  of  biofuels  including   ethanol  and  biodiesel             Plug-­‐in  battery  powered   vehicles                                                                                                                           1  http://www.who.int/hia/hgebrief_transp.pdf  

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