Politics

Taking Technology Seriously in Global Environmental Politics

Global Environmental Politics cover

A special issue on new technologies is now available

I am proud to announce a special issue of Global Environmental Politics on new technologies, edited by Simon Nicholson of American University and me, is now available. We write in the introductory essay: Human beings are at once makers of and made by technology. The ability to wield tools was an essential ingredient in propelling an …

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Battle for the Senate: The Environmental Stakes in Arizona

In an election that could determine control of the Senate, the candidates’ views are far apart.

In Arizona, the Senate race pits two former military pilots against each other. The Republican incumbent is not as rabidly anti-environmental as some of her colleagues, but clearly is no fan of regulation. Her opponent is committed to fighting climate change and seems open to major federal investment in renewable energy. Martha McSally. The incumbent …

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Battle for the Senate: Too Close to Call in Maine

Control of the Senate may hinge on this race.

The 2020 Senate race pits Republican incumbent Susan Collins against Sarah Gideon. Collins is far more environment-friendly than her GOP colleagues. That still makes her much less so than Joe Manchin (D-W. Va.) on the other side of the aisle. In contrast, Gideon supports much stronger climate action. Susan Collins. Collins is an outlier among …

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Sherlock Holmes and the Mystery of the Job-Killing Regulations

In which Holmes confronts his strangest and most perplexing case.

[I’m re-upping this 2014 post since the “job-killing regulation” meme has resurfaced at the GOP Convention.  The scene is Holmes’s apartment at 221B Baker Street.] “When the prospective client arrives, Watson, you’ll find that he’s a politician, that his electoral base is devoted to Fox News, and that he gets campaign contributions from fossil fuel …

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Election 2020: The Battle for the Senate

Whatever happens to the White House, control of the Senate will be crucial.

Today, I’ll look at how key races have shifted in the past six month, and why this matters for environmental law. We’ve just finished the Democratic Convention, and the GOP Convention is underway. But control of the Senate may be equally important.It’s crucial to any president’s legislative agenda and judicial appointments. Senate control gives an …

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Trump Finds His Medical Rasputin

The newest addition to Trump’s coronavirus task force is a faux expert who just happens to share all of Trump’s views.

President Trump has added a new member to his coronavirus task force, Dr. Scott Atlas.  It’s no wonder that Trump loves Dr. Atlas, a retired Stanford radiologist who frequently appears on Fox.  Atlas thinks  “we are committing national suicide” if we continue serious health precautions against the coronavirus. Here are more of Dr. Atlas’s dubious …

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The Draft Democratic Platform and the Environment

The Democrats are promising bold climate action but not committing to details.

The Republicans have decided not to update their 2016 platform, but the Democrats now have a draft of their 2020 platform. The platform essentially calls for aggressively moving beyond Obama’s actions (and eliminating Trump’s).  For those who are in a rush, I’ll start with the takeaways. Key Points Here are some of the most important aspects …

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What Will Harris’s Nomination Mean for the Environment?

She’s been outspoken on climate and EJ issues, but her core interests may be elsewhere.

Kamala Harris has taken some strong positions on climate change and environmental justice.  Her nomination signals the extent to which the Democratic party now embraces those issues.  However, to the extent one can judge from her public record, her highest priority interests have been elsewhere during her time in the Senate. While campaigning for the …

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Managing a Pandemic, Enron-Style

The Administration’s management harkens back to a spectacular business collapse at the turn of the century.

Think of this as a parable. I’ll draw out some parallels at the end with the Trump Administration’s handling of the coronavirus, as detailed in a story in Sunday’s Washington Post. But first I’ll let you make some of the connections yourself. The Trump team’s triumph in 2016 was one of the great upsets in …

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BP’s Surprising Pivot

An oil giant decides to face the future instead of fighting it.

With all that’s going on, it’s easy to miss what would in normal times be major news. On Tuesday, BP announced it was beginning to turn away from the oil business. The most significant thing may be this: BP stock rose after the announcement. BP has already sold its petrochemical business. It also announced that …

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