Energy

The future politics of cap-and-trade in California

It doesn’t look so good for the oil and gas industry

As Ann and Ethan both noted, two major pieces of climate legislation were passed by the California legislature this week, and Governor Brown has promised to sign both bills.  Overall, the legislation extends the state’s greenhouse gas reduction goals (which were originally to reach 1990 levels of emissions by 2020) out to a 40% reduction […]

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The Clinton Foundation and the Environment

Clinton Foundation

There’s a lot of talk about where the money comes from. But where does it go?

We hear a lot about the Clinton Foundation these days, but it’s all about where the money comes from.  That’s outside the scope of this blog, but it made me curious about what they do with the money.  In particular, I wondered what they did for the environment. Since the only thing I really knew […]

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Libertarian Candidate Endorses a Carbon Fee

Gary Johnson

Gary Johnson has put his weight behind

In an interview in Alaska, Gary Johnson endorsed the idea of a fee on carbon emissions. Here’s what he had to say, according to E&E News: “Johnson described his “free market approach” to global warming to the Juneau Empire in an interview published this weekend. He said his plan would include a fee, “not a […]

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A Small-Government Approach to Pricing Carbon

CO2_smoke

We can impose a price on carbon without a tax or emissions trading. Here’s how.

Cap and dividend is a politically appealing idea; put a price on carbon, then refund the money to consumers in equal shares.  But conservatives and libertarians object to this idea on two grounds. First, cap-and-trade systems are complex and require a lot of regulatory oversight.  Second, if the government collects the money, despite its current […]

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Legal Analysis of CAISO Expansion

Electricalgrid

We don’t foresee changes to FERC jurisdiction or Commerce Clause validity

The California Independent System Operator — known as CAISO — is considering expanding its footprint to include Pacific Corp as a participating transmission owner.   CAISO recently commissioned a study that Professor William Boyd of the University of Colorado and I authored, in consultation with  Ethan Elkind  of Berkeley and UCLA and Sho Sato Professor […]

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A Darker Shade of Green

green party

Jill Stein and her party call for a 40% cut in U.S. carbon emissions in the next four years.

Although the Green Party  doesn’t seem to be pulling a lot of voters at this point, it seems only fair to include them in the roundup of the parties’ environmental positions.  As you could infer from the name, the Green Party puts a very high priority on environmental quality. Interestingly, the current party platform is dated […]

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The Aviation Endangerment Finding

airplane CO2

While we are watching the political conventions, EPA took an important step forward

Last Monday, EPA issued a formal finding that carbon emissions from commercial aviation endanger human health and welfare.   Understanding the significance of the finding requires a little background. Section 231(a)(2) of the Clean Air Act directs the EPA Administrator to “issue proposed emission standards applicable to the emission of any air pollutant from any class […]

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A Clash of Visions

Trump_&_Clinton

The two parties couldn’t disagree more about energy policy.

In every election, there are people who claim that both parties are alike. That’s certainly not true about energy policy this year.The distance between the tickets can be expressed numerically: Kaine has a 91% lifetime score of from the League of Conservation Voters, while Pence’s is 4%. And the differences between the presidential candidates are equally […]

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Tim Kaine and the Environment

Tim Kaine

Despite some blemishes, he deserves strong support from environmentalists.

I reported last week on Mike Pence’s environmental record. This week, Tim Kaine is the one in the spotlight. Only a few minutes ago, Clinton announced that he was her choice – pretty much what the press had predicted for the last day or two. Environmentalists have a lot of reason to be happy about […]

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Do water managers’ perceptions influence innovation?

FIg5

New survey probes the innovation deficit

Climate change and population growth are rapidly increasing stress on our water systems, challenging their ability to deliver critical services.  To respond to this, we need more than simple course adjustments in how we manage our water – we need entirely new paradigms that will improve resource efficiency and support more sustainable urban water systems. Considerable […]

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