Carbon Taxes vs. Cap and Trade: Theory and Practice. Robert Stavins, November 2019, Paper, “There is widespread agreement among economists – and a diverse set of other policy analysts – that, at least in the long run, an economy-wide carbon-pricing system will be an essential element of any national policy that can achieve meaningful reductions of CO2 emissions costeffectively in the United States and many other countries. There is less agreement, however, among economists and others in the policy community regarding the choice of specific carbon-pricing policy instrument, with some supporting carbon taxes and others favoring cap-and-trade mechanisms. How do the two major approaches to carbon pricing compare on relevant dimensions, including but not limited to efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and distributional equity? This paper addresses this question by drawing on theories of policy instrument choice pertaining to the attributes – or merits – of the instruments. The paper also draws on relevant empirical evidence. It concludes with a look at the path ahead.Link