Politics

Hummer to China

At the close of last week’s Congressional delegation trip to China to discuss, among other things, climate change commitments, Rep. Edward Markey had this to say about the upcoming Copenhagen talks and efforts to convince the Chinese to agree to GHG caps (as reported in the NYT): “This is going to be one of the most …

CONTINUE READING

Judge Sotomayor’s Environmental Record

Now that President Obama has nominated her for a seat on the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Sonia Sotomayor’s record as a federal court judge will be under the microscope. Political pundits, legal scholars and advocacy groups from across the political spectrum will all be scrutinizing Sotomayor’s extensive record as a federal …

CONTINUE READING

It’s Sotomayor!

President Obama announced his decision to nominate Sonia Sotomayor for the Souter seat today. Environmental issues are unlikely to loom large in the confirmation battle.  So far as we know at this point, her most notable decision was in the Entergy case, which involved the question of whether power plants need to use closed cycle …

CONTINUE READING

Another Env Law Prof Goes to Washington

President Obama announced his intention to nominate Chris Schroeder to head the Office of Legal Policy at DOJ.  As the announcement indicates, Schroeder is an eminent authority on environmental law: Christopher H. Schroeder is Charles S. Murphy Professor of Law and Professor of Public Policy Studies, and director of the Program in Public Law at …

CONTINUE READING

Climate bill is out of committee (thanks in part to speed reader?)

Yesterday evening, by a 33-25 vote, the House Energy and Commerce Committee passed the Waxman-Markey climate and energy bill (full text here – all 946 pages of it). This quick analysis by Kate Sheppard at Grist.org is useful.  This New York Times article discusses the opposition to the bill from the agricultural sector, and the likely difficulties that …

CONTINUE READING

A Good Week for Environmental Federalism

This has been a very good week for proponents of environmental federalism. On Tuesday, President Obama convened a Rose Garden ceremony to announce first-ever federal regulatory mandates specifically designed to address global warming. The federal government’s new CAFE standards for new cars and light trucks, beginning with the 2012 model year, will simultaneously reduce greenhouse …

CONTINUE READING

Auto Emissions Deal–Enough Credit to Go Around?

The announcement of the deal on auto emissions was roundly hailed as a remarkable achievement of the Obama Administration.  There is no arguing with the notion that it was dramatic, both in terms of the bargaining process and the outcome.  The Los Angeles Times today provided a behind-the-scenes view of the months-long negotiations, including everything …

CONTINUE READING

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 …

CONTINUE READING

Taking sides on Waxman-Markey

Now that the revised Waxman-Markey compromise draft has been make public (here), those in favor of strong climate change regulation are soul-searching about whether to support it.  Did Waxman give away too much — on, among other things, free allowances to industry, reduced caps, and lessened requirements for ramping up renewable energy sources (see Steve’s post …

CONTINUE READING

Who will pay for the costs of foreign carbon dioxide in our consumer goods?

I discussed in this post the problem of GHG emissions from imported consumer products.  We import and buy more and more goods from China and other countries that rely heavily on greenhouse gas-intensive coal-fired power.  As a result, our consumer habits are responsible for a large and growing proportion of GHG emissions in other countries.   These …

CONTINUE READING

TRENDING