Department or Program

Environmental Studies


The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative is a cap-and-trade program employed in the Northeast United States of America. There are currently 10 participating states: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont. However, New Jersey quit the program in 2011 and rejoined in 2020 so this study focuses primarily on the nine states which have remained consistent with their participation in the program to make sure the data are consistent. This study aims to show the benefits of using economics to mitigate climate change. Furthermore, it also differentiates cap-and-trade programs from a carbon tax. There are many possibilities within a cap-and-trade system. RGGI is the only multi-state program currently used in the United States. It allows the participating states to use their auction proceeds in a variety of ways. I have created a database which showcases the different programs created by states. This database shows information such as total revenue per capita, number of participating facilities within the state, main use of proceeds, and if their programs involve low-income assistance as well as the ability for a double dividend. The database results in a scorecard with the aim to create a visual which quickly displays the basic proceeds recipients of each state's programs. The study culminates in a revised scorecard that provides a ranking of states on how efficient they are in their use of proceeds to fund intrastate programs.

Level of Access

Restricted: Campus/Bates Community Only Access

First Advisor

Lynn Lewis

Date of Graduation


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Number of Pages


Components of Thesis

1 PDF file


Available to Bates community via local IP address or Bates login.