Regulatory Fees in California: Killing Two Birds with One Stone?

The meltdown of the State of California’s budget raises a host of questions about governance, taxes and politics in the state and beyond.  One of those questions implicates other concerns regarding the design and implementation of effective environmental regulation.  As my father used to say, “Sometimes cheap is too expensive,” an adage that is borne …


Both Sides are Right on Waxman-Markey

Cara asks what people think about the Waxman-Markey bill.  It seems clear to me that both sides are right.  And no, this isn’t a case of realism versus idealism. Waxman-Markey might be the strongest thing that can get through Congress right now.  And even that might be over-optimistic: Waxman can move the thing through the …


It’s Morning in America (for science)

The  Washington Post reports: When President Obama lifts restrictions on funding for human embryonic stem cell research Monday, he will also issue a presidential memorandum aimed at insulating scientific decisions across the federal government from political influence, officials said today.


Don’t Know Much Biology

As a famous biologist once said, “without evolution nothing in biology makes sense.”   And biological science  is obviously basic to a lot of environmental policy. Thus, it is dismaying to learn that only four out of ten Americans believe in evolution.  Trying to understand environmental policy without believing in evolution is like trying to understand …


Energy and Environment Issues in the House

According to Energy and Environment Daily, House members have organized to promote energy and climate legislation “Reps. Jay Inslee (D-Wash.) and Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) are co-chairmen of the Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition, a new caucus designed to push for policies that promote renewable energy and domestic manufacturing, create “green collar” jobs, help curb global …


More accusations of politics trumping science and law at Interior

The Washington Post reports that officials at the Department of Interior ignored “key scientific findings” and the views of National Park Service officials “when they limited water flows in the Grand Canyon to optimize generation of electric power there, risking damage to the ecology of the spectacular national landmark.”  The Post story, written by Juliet …