California’s cap and trade program creates a market place to buy and sell the rights to pollute. The system sounds simple, but there are some complex rules that must be followed. San Francisco Public Press have taken it upon themselves to break it all down and simplify what cap and trade means and how it really works. And what better way to simplify a complex system than turn it into a board game? Public Press executive director Michael Stoll and reporter and illustrator Anna Vignet joined KALW’s Hana Baba to teach her the rules of the California Cap and Trade game.
MICHAEL STOLL: The idea is to put a price on what is essentially a free sort of tragedy of the commons. You put a pollutant out into the atmosphere and it affects the whole planet. The idea is to try to bring that into the existing economic system, which the proponents of cap and trade feel is the most effective and efficient way of regulating carbon dioxide and green house gases. It’s an unproved theory because no one has ever tried this before, at least on this scale.
Click the audio player above to hear the rest of the conversation.