sustainability

The LA County Sustainability Plan

An innovative approach to ambitious goals

Last week, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the LA Countywide Sustainability Plan. Along with my colleagues Sean Hecht and Nat Logar and other faculty across UCLA, I assisted in the drafting process and witnessed the shaping of the Plan from the ground up. The final Plan provides a best practices model …

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The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Ambitious international targets for sustainability

From September 25-27, the UN is hosting the high-level Sustainable Development Summit and, assuming all goes according to plan, adopting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  The result of years of negotiation with dedicated efforts at transparency and inclusion, the SDGs are a big deal in the international development community. They represent ambitious, consensus international targets …

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What’s New in Environmental Economics?

Some interesting recent publications.

It sometimes takes awhile for journals to reach my desk as they circulate among faculty, so this isn’t hot off the presses.  But I’ve been looking at some recent issues of JEEM (the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management), and I found a number of very interesting articles.  Fully grasping the articles would require a …

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Los Angeles Releases First-Ever Urban Sustainability “pLAn”

Envisioning greener energy, cleaner air, and reduced consumption in LA by 2035

Perhaps no metropolis is better positioned than Los Angeles to pioneer ground-breaking environmental initiatives. As the second-largest U.S. city, and with the country’s largest municipally owned utility, a world-class research university–UCLA, and the blessings of abundant sunshine and a temperate Mediterranean climate, Los Angeles could serve as a global model for urban sustainability. Today, the …

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Postcard from Barcelona

Looking at the Catalonian path to sustainability

Flying into Barcelona, it becomes immediately obvious that this is a city with its eye on a sustainable future. Right along the waterfront is a large photovoltaic array, perched on four giant supports. It is emblematic of a broader set of initiatives that, for a short time, placed Spain at the forefront of renewable energy …

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Millenium Development Goals Report 2011

We’re a little late on this, but early last month the United Nations issued its 2011 Millenium Development Goals report, which really should be at the top of the environmental community’s focus.  Usually, the MDGs are thought of simply as concerning poverty and development, but of course these issues deeply concern the environment.  More directly, although not …

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The (Environmental) Wealth of Nations

Costa Rica is taking seriously the idea that national wealth does not solely consist of physical or financial assets but also of environmental goods and natural resources.  As Thomas Friedman explained in yesterday’s column: “More than any nation I’ve ever visited, Costa Rica is insisting that economic growth and environmentalism work together. It has created …

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Do as I say, not as I do

Scientists are often in the news complaining that governments are not doing enough to solve environmental problems, especially the problem of climate change.   But some scientific stonethrowers own houses may be made of glass.   In the latest issue of Environmental Science and Technology, staff scientist Evan Mills of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory writes that the …

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