Keystone XL pipeline

Trump’s Contradictory Policies

Trump’s policies clash with each other remarkably often.

A certain amount of policy inconsistency is inevitable in any Administration. But the Trump Administration seems to be breaking all records.  The Administration does have strong impulses. The trouble is that its goals keep colliding.  Here are some examples. Favoring gas at the expense of coal. . .  And vice versa. Trump wants to promote …

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Public Opinion and Energy Politics

Pew published some intriguing polling results on energy issues just before Christmas. Americans have clearly noticed falling prices at the gas pump, but only half realize that U.S. oil and gas production has soared.  So far, the changes haven’t affected policy views: a large majority favors expanding use of alternative energy, but solid majorities continue …

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Does Keystone Matter?

A recent analysis suggests that the pipeline could result in production of a billion extra barrels between now and 2030.

Many people who have studied the issue tell me that the Keystone XL issue is mostly symbolic, because the Alberta oil sands are going to be used one way or another.  But I’m having some second thoughts because of arguments made (here) by Berkeley economist Max Aufhammer. He’s a pretty hard-headed analyst, not given to …

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The Debt Ceiling and the Environment

The House GOP plans to require a rollback of environmental regulations as a condition for raising the debt ceiling. This would be a massive power-grab by the House at the expense of the President and the Senate.

It slipped under the radar screen due to all the furor over the impending government shutdown, but the NY Times ran an important article two weeks ago about the debt ceiling.  The Republican plan is apparently to condition their agreement to raise the debt ceiling and save the country from default on a massive regulatory rollback. …

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On the politics of the Keystone pipeline

This article from the New York Times a couple of days ago describes how President Obama, on a fundraising visit here in the Bay Area, made clear how difficult environmental politics are for a President in the midst of a recession – especially the Great Recession:  Appearing at the home of an outspoken critic of …

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