This article responds to Jean Tirole, winner of the Nobel prize for economics in 2014 and the signatories of the international appeal launched by Toulouse School of Economics and the Climate Economics Chair at Paris Dauphine University who propose setting a universal carbon price and establishing a transcontinental emissions trading system. We hold that the Paris Agreement, which disregarded such recommendations, represents a paradigm shift. The new economy of climate change departs from the standard approach with regard to its economic instruments (emissions prices and quotas), returning to a classical political economy approach in terms of production economics. It confers a strategic role on methods and techniques for cutting emissions, as part of a long-term vision of energy and industrial transition. It is underpinned by the concerted action of States and multiple actors operating on various scales. There can be no magic wand to swiftly reduce greenhouse gas emissions while disregarding the real conditions of States, which all differ in terms of their relative development, technological capacity and political and social situation, not to mention the diversity of their values and priorities.
Keywords: Paris Agreement, climate change, carbon price, carbon trading, political economy, regulation, decarbonization
Jel Code: Q54, Q58, F53