Last week featured some remarkable developments relating to climate policy.
Some events last week sent a strong signal that the tide is turning against fossil fuels. Each of the events standing alone would have been noteworthy. The clustering of these events dramatizes an important shift. To paraphrase Churchill, this may not be beginning of the end for fossil fuels, but at least it is the …CONTINUE READING
Coronavirus, Climate Change, and the Global Energy Transition
There has been no shortage of commentary on what the Coronavirus pandemic means for climate action and for the energy industry. Obviously, it is too early to draw firm conclusions, but the last several weeks have made clear that the crisis is affecting the entire energy economy in profound ways and that our collective response …CONTINUE READING
Emmett Institute faculty submit letter opposing Trump’s proposed rollback on methane regulations
Recently, my colleague Sean Hecht and I jointly submitted a comment letter opposing a new EPA Proposed Rule that would roll back standards limiting methane emissions from oil and natural gas production, processing, transmission, and storage facilities. This Proposed Rule essentially revokes two Obama-era regulations, finalized in 2012 and 2016, that first established these methane …CONTINUE READING
Guest Blogger Gregory Dotson: Oregon May Join the Western Climate Initiative: What About Gasoline Prices?
Regardless of State Action, Surging Sales of Electric Vehicles Could Crash Gasoline Prices
Oregon is on the verge of taking historic action to establish an economy-wide cap and invest program and clean up the state’s carbon pollution. In doing so, Oregon could demonstrate how one state can do its part to avoid the worst effects of climate change. The concept dates back more than a decade, but the …CONTINUE READING
Guest Bloggers Deborah Gordon and Frances Reuland: Is California Extraordinary? Its Oil Resources Certainly Are
Facts About California’s Oil and Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Despite ongoing federal rollbacks to environmental regulations, California has the right to set its own clean air standards because it is truly extraordinary. Truth be told, the compelling circumstances that first set in motion California’s vehicle emissions standards remain entirely valid. And there are four recent conditions, related to California’s oil supply, production, and refining, …CONTINUE READING
Post #4 in a Series on California Climate Policy by Ken Alex, Senior Policy Advisor to Gov. Jerry Brown
[This is the fourth post in a series expressing my view of why California’s actions on climate change are so important and how they will change the world. The introductory post provides an overview and some general context.] In 2015, Jerry Brown challenged the State to reduce oil usage in the transportation sector by 50% by 2030. …CONTINUE READING
They’re both fossil fuels, but their producers don’t always have the same policy views.
Bush’s environmental policies were bad, but Trump’s policies are way worse. One reason is that Bush and Cheney were oilman, and Trump is obsessed with coal. Yes, oil and coal are both fossil fuels, but they have different economics and different policy stances. These are two very different industries. The U.S. coal companies are in …CONTINUE READING
Comments to Oil Trade Association Attack Agency Staff, Dismiss Environmental Safeguards
At a recent meeting of the American Petroleum Institute (the national oil company trade association), Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke made clear some of his plans for the Department of the Interior. According to AP reporting, he called almost 1/3 of employees disloyal, said he plans to speed up oil and logging permits, and revealed a …CONTINUE READING
While FRA Considers New Federal Regulations, States Can Ramp Up Prevention and Emergency Response
At a joint Senate and Assembly hearing last week on oil by rail safety in California, some lawmakers expressed frustration at slow federal action, and asked what California can do to increase public safety. My testimony focused on federal preemption issues, defining areas where the state can regulate, and those where it is preempted by …CONTINUE READING
LA Times op-ed highlights increase in trains transporting oil into California
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is reducing its previous estimate for technically recoverable oil in California’s Monterey Shale from 13.7 billion barrels of oil to just 600 million barrels of oil—a dramatic 95.6 percent reduction. Has the oil industry been chasing rainbows in search of illusive “black gold” Monterey oil? For years, the oil …CONTINUE READING