Michael J. Walsh, Ph.D.
Managing Director, Public Policy & Research, IncubEx
Walsh has been a leader in research, design, development and activation of pioneering market-based mechanisms that advance natural resource conservation and air and water quality. He has served as a principal designer and lead implementer of existing markets for water quality and air pollution reduction, including sulfur dioxide and greenhouse gases. In each of these market development programs an intensive R&D process was accompanied by major outreach and education efforts involving a broad range of stakeholders. Walsh has enjoyed two decades of successful interaction with diverse sectors ranging from agriculture, forestry, water authorities, manufacturing, energy, to academia and governments at all levels.
Walsh was a co-founder and Executive Vice President of the Chicago Climate Exchange, where he directed new product research and development and policy analysis. Walsh played a central role in the implementation of all major Climate Exchange initiatives in the U.S. and internationally, including the leading regulated exchange markets hosted by the Chicago Climate Futures Exchange and the European Climate Exchange. He authored several successful U.S. and international patents based on unique Climate Exchange systems. Walsh served on the Board of Directors of the Montreal Climate Exchange, and has been a keynote speaker at conferences, legislatures and academic institutions throughout the world.
In 2007 Walsh had the honor of serving as Co-Chair of a scientific symposium at Hawaii that commemorated NOAA’s 200 year anniversary and 50 years of carbon dioxide measurements at the Mauna Loa observatory, the longest continuous record of atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide. Currently Walsh serves on the Advisory Board of the NSF research initiative Robust Decision-making for Climate and Energy Policy at the University of Chicago’s Computational Institute.
Walsh recently directed a program to activate the first centrally-cleared water quality credit trading program hosted by the State of Pennsylvania. This required design of a clearing mechanism, trading program rulebook, and auctions, feedback and educational processes, and administration of a successful multi-tranche water quality credit auction involving the state infrastructure fund, farmers, and wastewater treatment facilities. Walsh has also been the lead analyst and report author of feasibility studies for water quantity management incentive programs for the Great Lakes, for surface and groundwater resources in New Mexico, and for surface waters of Alberta.
In an earlier position with Environmental Financial Products, Walsh arranged voluntary international transactions involving environmental mitigation projects. He has lead research and implementation projects funded by entities including the Government of Canada, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Agency for International Development.
Walsh has represented his employers in multiple hearings held by the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the National Assembly of Quebec, and has extensive interaction with numerous federal and state governmental and regulatory bodies.
In the early 1990s Walsh served as a Senior Economist with the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT) where he directed efforts to develop exchange-based environmental markets. Walsh designed and managed the first three annual auctions of sulfur dioxide emission allowances that were conducted as part of the highly successful U.S. Environmental Protection Agency acid rain reduction program.
Prior to his position with the Chicago Board of Trade, Walsh was a Financial Economist in the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Tax Policy. Walsh has also served as a consultant to the Michigan Treasury Department and the West Virginia Tax Study Commission. He served as a gubernatorial appointee to the Florida Air Emissions Trading Commission, and on the Executive Board of the Southern Research Institute’s Environmental Technology Verification initiative.
Walsh has been an instructor at the University of Notre Dame and the Illinois Institute of Technology. He holds Bachelor of Science degrees in Economics and Political Science from Illinois State University, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Economics from Michigan State University.
Michael J. Walsh, Ph.D.
Ph.D. Economics, Michigan State University, 1987
Major Field: Public Finance Minor fields: Labor Economics, Econometrics
Dissertation: Energy Tax Credits and Housing Improvement
M.A. Economics, Michigan State University, 1985
B.S. Political Science, B.S. Economics, Illinois State University, 1982, with honors
Managing Director, Public Policy & Research, IncubEx (current)
President, M J Walsh & Associates, Inc.
Co-founder and Executive Vice President for Research, Chicago Climate Exchange, 2002-2011
Member, Board of Directors, Montreal Climate Exchange, 2005-2010
Senior Vice President, Environmental Financial Products, 1998-2002
Senior Vice President, Centre Financial Products, 1995-1998
Senior Economist, Chicago Board of Trade, 1989-1995
Financial Economist, U.S. Department of the Treasury, Office of Tax Policy, 1987-1988
Instructor, University of Notre Dame College of Business, 1986-1987
Analyst, Michigan Treasury Department, Summer 1984
Research Assistant to Dr. Ronald Fisher, Border Tax Analysis conducted for the West Virginia Tax Study Commission, summer 1983
Analyst, First National Bank of Chicago, Retail Banking Division, summer 1982
Selected writings and activities:
“Global Fixed Income Investing Based on an Index of Sustainable Companies” with Ronald Ryan, William Taki, and James McCarthy. (Phoenix Global Capital Management working paper), November 2013.
“Establishing a Clearinghouse to Reduce Impediments to Water Quality Trading”, with O’Hara, Jeffrey K., and Marchetti, Paul K. The Journal of Regional Analysis and Policy, JRAP 42(2): 139-150. 2012.
“The potential benefits of an organized exchange for the sustainable use of water in Alberta”. with Sandor, Richard L. and J.K. O’Hara. Edmonton, AB: Alberta Water Research Institute. 2010.
“A Framework for Coordinated Regulation Among Internationally Linked Carbon Markets”, with Richard Sandor, Chicago Climate Exchange Working Paper 90901, September, 2009.
Lead Author, “Feasibility Study of a Water Conservation Market for the Great Lakes Basin of North America”, (with Richard Sandor, Kellee James, Natalie Persky), Prepared for the Joyce Foundation, June 2006.
Lead author, “Preliminary Feasibility Study: Organized Water Markets in New Mexico”, with Richard L. Sandor and Kellee James. Prepared in cooperation with the McCune Charitable Foundation and PNM. December, 2005.
“The Viability of Environmental Derivatives as a Means of Funding Public Transportation”, prepared for the Transportation Research Board, June 2004.
Lead Writer, Chicago Climate Exchange Rulebook, 2003 (with Richard L. Sandor, Gerard Pannekoek, Alice LeBlanc, Robert Rabinowitz and members of various CCX design committees).
“Greenhouse Gases Trading Market”, in Royal Society Philosophical Transactions: Carbon, Biodiversity, Conservation and Income: an analysis of a free market approach to land use change and forestry in Developing and Developed Countries. With Sandor, Richard L, and Marques, Rafael L. Ian Swingland, Eric Bettelheim, John Grace, Ghillean Prance and Lindsay Saunders (Eds.). Royal Society. London. August 15, 2002.
Michael J. Wash, “Can Emission Trading of Carbon Dioxide Bootstrap the Transition?”, The Carbon Dioxide Dilemma-Promising Technologies and Policies, pp. 107-116. Proceedings of a Symposium, National Academy of Engineering National Research Council. April 23-24, 2002.
“Kyoto or Not: Opportunities in Carbon Trading Are Here” with Richard L. Sandor, Environmental Quality Management”, March 2001.
“Harnessing the Carbon Credits Market to Maximize Capital Flows to Clean Development in Emerging Companies”, Posted at the On-line Conference Energy Resource 2000 (www.energyresource2000), May 2000.
“Some Observations on the Evolution of the International Greenhouse Gas Emissions Trading Market“, with Richard L. Sandor, in Emissions Trading: Environmental Policy’s New Instruments, Richard F. Kosobud, editor. John Wiley & Sons. January 2000.
“Simplified CDM” Environmental Financial Products LLC, Working Paper 2000/06-02, presented at UNFCCC COP5 in Bonn, Germany, November 1999.
“Maximizing Financial Support for Biodiversity in the Emerging Kyoto Protocol Markets”, Science of the Total Environment, Volume 240, Issues 1-3 18 October 1999, p 145–156.
“Growing the Market: Recent Developments in Agricultural Sector Carbon Trading“, Proceedings of the Agricultural Practices and Policies For Carbon Sequestration in Soil Symposium held at The Ohio State University, July 1999
“Opportunities for the U.S. Natural Gas Industry in the Emerging GHG Credit Markets”
(with Sandor, Richard L. and LeBlanc, Alice) Natural Gas Weekly (June, 1999).
Lead Author, “Final Report, Options And Recommendations, Clean Development Mechanism and Joint Implementation Transaction Process”, Prepared for Working Group 2 (Joint Implementation and Clean Development Mechanism) of Canada’s International Flexibility Mechanisms Issue Table (with Winnipeg Commodity Exchange and Cowan Research). April 29, 1999
Lead Author, “International Emissions Trading (IET) Design Options, Principal Methodological Issues”, prepared for the Canadian Issue Table Process, Kyoto Mechanisms Table, Working Group 1 (IET), (with Winnipeg Commodity Exchange and Cowan Research). April 28, 1999
“Global Environmental Trading System (GETS) Corporation”, Environmental Financial Products, November, 1998
“Market Architecture, Quality Control and Liability: Can the Capital Markets Inform the Design of the International Emissions Trading System?,” (with Richard L. Sandor), prepared for the Brazil/U.S Aspen Global Forum on the Clean Development Mechanism, October 9-12, 1998.
“A Market Approach to Cutting Environmental Protection Costs”, in Baumol, W.J. and Blinder, A.S., Economics, Principles and Policy, seventh edition, Dryden Press, London, 1997.
“Impediments To Markets For SO2 Emission Allowances”, (with V.C. Ramesh and K. Ghosh), Transactions on Power Systems, Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, Vol. 11, No. 1, pp. 344-349, February 1996.
“Potential for Derivative Instruments on Sulfur Dioxide Emission Reduction Credits”, Derivatives Quarterly, Vol. 1, No. 1, pp. 1-8, Fall 1994.
“Environmental Futures: Preliminary Thoughts on the Market For Sulfur Dioxide Emission Allowances” (with Sandor, Richard L.) in Advanced Strategies in Financial Risk Management, Robert J. Schwartz, ed., Prentice Hall, 1993.
“Des contrats à terme au service de l’environement”, (with Sandor, Richard L.), Analyse Financière, Mars 1993, pp. 72-84.
“Dual Trading and Futures Market Liquidity: An Analysis of Three Chicago Board of Trade Contract Markets” (with Dinehart, Stephen J.), The Journal of Futures Markets, Vol. 11, No. 5, pp. 519-537 (1991).
“Additional Evidence on the Border Tax Effect: The Case of the West Virginia Sales Tax” (with Jones, Jonathan), National Tax Journal, 1990.
“Energy Tax Credits and Housing Improvement”, Energy Economics, Vol. 11, No. 2, pp. 274-284, October, 1989.
“History of U.S. Tax Depreciation Policy” (with Lowell Dworin and David Brazell), U.S. Department of the Treasury, Office of Tax Analysis, 1989.
Selected Testimony and Events:
White House Stakeholder Briefing: Department of Commerce and American Competitiveness in the Green Economy, October 22, 2009,
“New Business Opportunities Enabled by Data Services of the Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration “
U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture, Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management, September 26, 2007,
“Exchange Innovation Fostered by the Commodity Futures Modernization Act and its Exempt Commercial Market Structure”
U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Conference, hosted by Senators Jeffrey Bingaman and Peter Domenici, April 4, 2006,
“Initial Lessons from A Large Scale Multi-sector GHG Reduction and Trading Program”
U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Subcommittee on Science, Technology and Space, field hearing hosted by Senator Sam Brownback at Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas, June 6, 2003,
“Participation of U.S. Best Management Practice Farmers as Carbon Credit Sellers in the Chicago Climate Exchange”
Quebec National Assembly Committee on Transportation and the Environment, 20 February 2003,
“Environmental and Economic Role of the Chicago Climate Exchange”
U.S. House of Representatives, Energy and Commerce Committee, Energy and Power Subcommittee, October 5, 1994,
“Observations on the SO2 Allowance Market”, prepared for and delivered on behalf of Patrick H. Arbor, Chairman, Board of Trade of the City of Chicago.
City University of New York
University of Pennsylvania
Illinois State University
University of California at Berkeley
Illinois Institute of Technology
University of California at San Diego
University of Texas
Texas A&M University
Michigan State University
University of Chicago
University of Idaho
Johns Hopkins University, Bologna, Italy
Ohio State University
University of Illinois at Chicago
College of DuPage, Illinois
SUNY-ESF, Syracuse, NY
Iowa State University
University of Colorado Boulder
Berea College, Kentucky
Society of American Foresters, Reno NV, November, 2008
Delhi Sustainable Summit, December 2007
President’s Sustainability Symposium, University of Idaho Sustainability Summit, Moscow, Idaho, October, 2007
Canadian Emissions Trading Association, Montreal, December 2006
Carbon Expo Asia Beijing, October 26, 2006
Sydney Emissions Trading Forum, 1998
Co-Chair, Symposium at Hawaii to commemorate the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s two-hundred year anniversary and fifty years of Keeling Curve carbon dioxide measurements at the Mauna Loa observatory, the longest continuous record of atmospheric concentrations of carbon dioxide. November, 2007.
Event Director: Inaugural Greenhouse Gas Emissions Trading Policy Forum, Chicago, June, 1997
Lead manager for design and implementation of Chicago Board of Trade Recyclable Materials Exchange (1994-1995)
Auction Director at the Chicago Board of Trade, first three US Environmental Protection auctions of Sulfur Dioxide emission allowances, 1993, 1994, 1995.
Seminar Instructor: Emissions Trading Fundamentals, Mock Auction and Trading Simulation
- Budapest, Hungary in cooperation with the U.S. Energy Association and USAID (1999)
- Moscow, Russia in cooperation with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (2000)
- New York, NY, in cooperation with City University of New York (2011)
External Advisory Board Member, Center for Robust Decision Making on Climate and Energy Policy, the RDCEP Center, University of Chicago Computational Institute, 2010-current
Advisory Board Member, Southern Energy Research Institute, 1998-1999
Illinois Institute of Technology Stuart School of Finance (Introduction to Financial Markets) (occasional)
University of Notre Dame College of Business, 1987-1988, (Managerial Economics)
Lansing Community College, 1986 (Introduction to Microeconomics)
Michigan State University, 1985 (Introduction to Microeconomics)