markCorrect me if I'm wrong but isn't the "Emmision trading" an incentive to curb the emissions of pollutants. The government would set caps on emissions for the state. I see your point that some compaines would weigh the fines against more production and more emissions.
I imagine companies have software interlocks installed to prevent them from going over their emission limit. They would have to continually shut down to install higher limits.
I see commercials where oil companies are boasting about their environmental friendly procedures and technology to do even better. If a company bought more credits, I could see their competitors using that against them. If a company started polluting more than they have in the past, they will hear from the citizens because of obvious health problems.
I not saying " Emmision trading" is the best thing since sliced bread but it just another program that could be tried and improved upon if necessary...I could be wrong.
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Isn't it true, though, that polluters often find it less expensive to pollute and pay the fines than to actually correct the problem? Is the monitoring designed to prevent pollution or to promote increased revenue for the State? If the latter is true, then doesn't it appear that the State would hope for violations for the sake of a dollar?