Some people think we need to abolish capitalism to save the environment.
Bernie Sanders has a book called It’s OK to be Angry at Capitalism. There are certainly a lot of people across the political spectrum who feel that way. Capitalism is blamed for environmental destruction by many of the more radical segments of the Left. That’s not too surprising given the historic connection between the more …CONTINUE READING
State and local regulators can and should work to reduce particulate matter, ozone, and NOx emissions even when national standards are met.
States and local air quality regulators have the legal authority to set particulate matter (PM), ozone, and nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions standards and adopt regulations for these pollutants when they are already in attainment of the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the federal Clean Air …CONTINUE READING
Regulations have some sticking power, even when the White House changes hands.
The Trump Administration’s massive campaign against government regulation was horrifying at the time and depressing in retrospect. Many people have been left with doubts about whether it’s even worthwhile to bother with new regulations, given the risk of a switch in control of the White House. I don’t question Trump’s regulatory carnage. But Obama’s achievements …CONTINUE READING
California Supreme Court Rules County Ordinance Limiting Oil & Gas Development Preempted by State Law
Court Decision May Well Be Correct as a Matter of Law, But Represents Outdated & Unsound Public Policy
Last week, the California Supreme Court unanimously ruled that a local initiative measure that would have imposed severe restrictions on oil and gas development in Monterey County is preempted by state law and therefore invalid. The decision came in the case of Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. County of Monterey. The Supreme Court’s ruling was predictable, …CONTINUE READING
Ironically, a conservative legal doctrine might block some of his excesses.
Trump hasn’t been at all secretive about plans for a possible second term. He has plans, big plans. So big, in fact, that they may collide with a conservative judicial rule called the Major Question Doctrine (MQD). Since the Court has mostly used the MQD to block initiatives by Democratic presidents, it would be more …CONTINUE READING
The state argued that Held v. Montana is a boring case about procedure. The kids made a compelling case that climate action is part of Montana’s constitutional obligation to maintain a healthy environment.
The very first American trial of a youth climate lawsuit was hardly blockbuster Court TV, but we learned a lot from the proceedings. The bench trial took place last month in the state capitol, Helena, where 16 youth plaintiffs ages 5 to 22 made the case that Montana’s unwavering promotion of fossil fuels violates the …CONTINUE READING
The enactment of NEPA 2.0 presents a golden opportunity for the agency.
In the recent debt ceiling law, Congress extensively revamped NEPA, the law governing environmental impact statements. An obscure White House agency, the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), will have the first opportunity to shape the interpretation of the new language. Much of the language in the new law is poorly drafted or vague, making CEQ’s …CONTINUE READING
Here’s a simple way to think about a hard problem.
The social cost of carbon is important in many regulatory decisions made by the executive branch. It basically measures the benefit of cutting one ton of carbon emissions. Figuring out the cost of carbon based on an analysis of climate impacts is very tricky. However, there’s another way to think about the problem: We might …CONTINUE READING
The Supreme Court decision in Sackett v. EPA will be bad for the nation’s wetlands. It is just as bad for democracy.
The Supreme Court decision in Sackett v. EPA limits the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to defend a large portion of the nation’s wetlands and waterways from pollution. The decision strips key environmental protections from the Clean Water Act by narrowly defining which bodies of water can be regulated under the Act, making it the most …CONTINUE READING
By Michael Kiparsky, with Dave Smith, Nell Green Nylen, Luke Sherman, Alida Cantor, Anita Milman, Felicia Marcus, David Sedlak, Bernhard Truffer, Christian Binz, Sasha Harris-Lovett, Jeff Lape, Justin Mattingly, Dave Owen, Lars Tummers, Buzz Thompson
In a recent post, my colleagues and I reported on our most recent research output in a long series of projects examining the effect of regulation on water innovation. The post describes a new framework for understanding and, ultimately, improving relationships between regulators and wastewater utility managers who are seeking to implement novel technical solutions, …CONTINUE READING