New Hampshire’s State Senate last week fell one vote short of overriding Gov. John Lynch’s veto of a bill that would have withdrawn the state from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a greenhouse gas cap-and-trade program whose participants include 10 states and provinces in the northeastern U.S. and Canada.

The Senate passed the bill, SB 154, earlier this year, prompting Gov. Lynch (D) to veto it because he said that pulling out of the initiative could cost the state jobs, now and in the future, as well as a loss of revenues generated from the sale of auction allowances. Opponents of the program say that the program drives up power prices and that its environmental benefits are questionable.

The Senate failed to override the veto on SB 154, 15-9.

RGGI last week, meanwhile, announced the results of its 13th quarterly auction of carbon dioxide allowances, saying that of the 42,189,685 current control-period (2009-2011) allowances offered for sale by the 10 participating states, only 7,487,000—or 17.75%—were sold. The auction clearing price was $1.89 per allowance, the minimum reserve price for the auction. Thirty-one entities submitted winning bids, with bids ranging from $1.89 to $5.18. Electric generators and their corporate affiliates purchased 94% of the current control-period allowances sold.

The participating states of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont also offered a smaller number of carbon dioxide allowances for a future control period (2012-2014). None of the future control-period allowances offered in the auction was sold.

The auction marked three years since the launch of RGGI. The next RGGI auction is scheduled for Dec. 7.

Sources: POWERnews, N.H Senate, RGGI