Making things the same: Gases, Emission Rights and the Politics of Carbon Markets

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Abstract / Description of output

This paper analyses the development of carbon markets: markets in permits to emit greenhouse gases or in credits earned by not emitting them. It describes briefly how such markets have come into being, and discusses in more detail two aspects of the efforts to ‘make things the same’ in carbon markets: how different gases are made commensurable, and how accountants have struggled to find a standard treatment of ‘emission rights’. The paper concludes by discussing the attitude that should be taken to carbon markets (for example by environmentalists) and the possibility of developing a ‘politics of market design’ oriented to making such markets more effective tools of abatement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)440-455
Number of pages16
JournalAccounting, Organizations and Society
Volume34
Issue number3-4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009

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