Developing Policy from the Ground Up

New article provides more detailed data and analysis of housing entitlement in the Bay Area

This blog post (and the underlying article) was co-authored by Moira O’Neill, Giulia Gualco-Nelson, and Eric Biber. Our team has released a new article on land-use regulation and housing in the Bay Area, building on our report from last February that explored the role of local law and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) on […]

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What’s The Best Way To Motivate Climate Action?

Answers reside deep in the heart of Texas

Texans have a few things to teach policy advocates about the way to incite and bolster political will for climate action at the local level. This is not a claim based on a lack of climate action, but rather because of a new surge of it. The majority of Texans have begun to recognize the […]

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On the present improbability and future necessity of carbon pricing

Mapping a politically feasible roadmap towards a future, rigorous carbon pricing system

Carbon pricing is in the news right now—and not in a good way.  Whether it is French protests over gas taxes, political challenges to Canada’s new federal carbon price system, voter rejection of a carbon price in Washington state, or (yet another) Australian government falling because of disputes over carbon pricing, the political challenges of […]

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Public Lands Watch: Sage Grouse Plans Move Forward

Administration takes next steps to scale back protections for iconic Western bird on federal public lands.

I’ve posted before about proposals by the Trump Administration to roll back protections for the sage grouse, an iconic species of the Western United States, from oil and gas development on federal public lands.  (The initial blog post with background is here; the specific proposed revisions are here.)  The Administration has now issued a final […]

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Two Years and Counting: Looking Forward

What’s the prognosis for the second half of Trump’s term?

In terms of regulatory policy, the second half of Trump’s term is shaping up to look a lot like Obama’s final two years in office.  Congress won’t be doing much to advance Trump’s environment/energy agenda, as was the case with Obama. So, like Obama, Trump’s focus will be on administrative action, particularly regulatory initiatives (or […]

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On magical, mythical, market unicorn fairies

Or how we can get effective climate policy without government intervention

I don’t usually respond to op-ed columns, but the column by Bret Stephens in the New York Times on climate policy yesterday is so …. foolish that I think it needs a response.  And more to the point, the foolishness in the column can help illuminate some of the major problems that have developed as […]

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Assessing Los Angeles’ Steps Toward Transit-Oriented Communities

TOC A Year Later: Is It Working?

As my Legal Planet colleagues Meredith Hankins and Ethan Elkind have written, decreasing VMT by changing the way we think about urban development is a high priority, especially here in California.  Amid last year’s slew of housing-related initiatives, Los Angeles took its own stab at a two-birds-one-stone approach to sustainable, affordable residential development, adopting the […]

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Two Years & Counting: A Historical Perspective

How does Trump compare with Bush, the last GOP President?

This is the second of three posts assessing the first two years of the Trump Administration.  We all seem to be subscribed to the “All Trump News, All the Time” newsfeed. It may be helpful to step back a bit and compare Trump with his last Republican predecessor, George W. Bush. How do the two […]

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Auctioning the Upzone: A New Strategy for Inducing Local-Government Compliance with State Housing Policies

New White Paper by U.C. Davis Law Professors Recommends Market-Based Tool to Incentivize Intensified Urban Development in California and Beyond

(Note: the following post was co-authored by U.C. Davis School of Law Professors Chris Elmendorf and Darien Shanske; the white paper discussed in the post is their work product.)  California’s housing policies–a topic that for years received precious little attention from state officials–has suddenly become the Golden State’s hottest political and policy issue.  The California Legislature passed […]

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Climate Negotiations Start in Poland: Setting the Stage

Much at Stake in COP-24, Including Negotiation of Paris Rulebook to Implement 2015 Commitments

This week and next, negotiators are meeting in Poland for the big annual international climate-change meeting. This meeting, formally, is the 24th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the 1992 treaty that provides the foundation for all official international action on climate change, and informally is called “COP-24.” It […]

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We’re Never Going to Meet Our GHG Transportation Goals Unless We Radically Rethink Our Cities

Introducing an ongoing series focused on reducing vehicle miles traveled as a crucial climate mitigation strategy

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about vehicle miles traveled, or VMT. Specifically, why is it so hard to get people to think seriously about reducing VMT as a climate mitigation strategy? Building on my earlier ode to electric scooters, this post begins a semi-regular series on different aspects of VMT reduction strategies, beginning with […]

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