Battle for the Senate: 2022 Preview

We’ve just been through one big election.  But it's only 2 years till the next one.

We’re only two years away from the next Senate elections. Granted, we’re not completely done with the 2020 Senate elections given the Georgia runoffs.   But just 24 months from now, control of the Senate will again be at stake.  On average, the President’s party loses two Senate seats in the off-year elections.  That’s not a …

CONTINUE READING

Reinventing Cost-Benefit Analysis

If the goal is to give decision makers the tools to make better decision, a single-dimensional metric isn't the way to go.

One key issue facing Biden on January 20 will be the role of the the White House regulatory czar. The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) is a tiny White House agency that is virtually unknown to the public. Yet it exercises outsized influence. OIRA is charged with screening all proposed government regulations using a strict …

CONTINUE READING

Biden Can Leverage Larger Trends to Make Climate Progress

Biden can use these three strategies to make major progress on climate issues.

With the next president of the United States finally decided, we can now begin moving on to the work at hand. Joe Biden’s election creates an exciting opportunity for climate action. But there’s one clear hurdle: Unless the January runoff elections in Georgia for two Senate seats deliver surprising success to the Democrats, President-elect Biden …

CONTINUE READING

New Fellows Join the UCLA Emmett Institute

Adrien Abecassis and Beth Kent bring expertise in international diplomacy and environmental justice to UCLA’s environmental law programs. 

Belated introductions are due for two new fellows who joined the UCLA Emmett Institute this summer, Adrien Abecassis and Beth Kent. Abecassis and Kent join four other Emmett Institute fellows, Charles Corbett, Benjamin Harris, Jesse Reynolds, and Siyi Shen, in limited-term faculty appointments at UCLA Law, conducting research, teaching classes, and supporting our public service. …

CONTINUE READING

 “Whole of Government” Climate Policy

We need the help of far-flung parts of the federal government to deal with climate.

President Biden will have to rely on administrative action to do much or all of the heavy lifting in climate policy. It’s clear that EPA has a central role to play in climate policy, but EPA does not stand alone. Other agencies also have important roles to play. Fortunately, the Biden transition team seems to …

CONTINUE READING

Trump’s Biggest Anti-Environmental Fail

He did his best to destroy EPA completely. But his devastating budget proposals got nowhere.

Trump was awful for the environment. But he wanted to be even worse. If Trump had had his way, only shreds of key environmental agencies would now be left. Although Trump has certainly succeeded in weakening them, the cores of the agencies remain intact.  Without them, Biden’s task would be much harder. Trump’s budgets unvaryingly …

CONTINUE READING

The IPCC Misses the Mark on Solar Geoengineering

Cover of IPCC's special report on 1.5°C warming

The Intergovernmental Panel Climate Change poorly portrays the "institutional and social constraints to deployment related to governance"

Not long ago, I re-read the top-level messages from the Intergovernmental Panel Climate Change (IPCC) on solar geoengineering’s governance issues. The Summary for Policymakers of most recent broad report, Global Warming of 1.5°C (SR1.5), says, in full: Solar radiation modification (SRM) [i.e. solar geoengineering] measures are not included in any of the available assessed pathways. …

CONTINUE READING

Three key environmental priorities for the Biden administration

Spoiler alert: the most important first steps are not directly environmental

Like many others, I breathed an enormous sigh of relief when the presidential race was called for Joe Biden. Like many others, I will not entirely relax until Biden is actually sworn in. The failure of our current norm-breaking President (and his enablers) to accept the election results is both frustrating and frightening. It also …

CONTINUE READING

Some of the Things Federal Agencies Can Do to Address Climate Change

Current federal law provides many ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, even without a friendly senate

As the likelihood grows that the United States will have a new president who will preside over a divided government, and various policy think tanks line up to offer suggestions for effective action on various important issues, it seems like the right time to shine a light once again on a series of reports issued …

CONTINUE READING

President Biden & Climate Change: What’s Achievable?

Divided federal government might still allow possibility for meaningful action

With a victory in the presidential election, Joe Biden now faces a U.S. Senate that still hangs in the balance. But even with a Democratic runoff sweep in Georgia next month, it will be very divided. So what will be possible for a President Biden and his administration to achieve on climate change? Agency action, …

CONTINUE READING

TRENDING