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Environmental Economics

What Are the Benefits and Costs of EPA's Proposed CO2 Regulation?

Robert Stavins | Posted 10.08.2014 | Green
Robert Stavins

The Obama Administration's proposed regulation of existing power-sector sources of CO2 has the potential to be cost-effective, and if you accept these numbers, it can also be welfare-enhancing, if not welfare-maximizing.

You Are Already Paying a Price On Carbon

Keith Gaby | Posted 07.13.2014 | Green
Keith Gaby

When something is "free", we end up paying the cost somewhere else in the system.

Understanding the IPCC: An Important Follow-Up

Robert Stavins | Posted 07.04.2014 | Green
Robert Stavins

My serious concerns about the effects of the government approval process on one section of the SPM should be considered in the much larger context of what is an exceptionally valuable scientific resource for those concerned with climate change.

Is the IPCC Government Approval Process Broken?

Robert Stavins | Posted 06.27.2014 | Green
Robert Stavins

Several of the CLAs present with me in Berlin commented that given the nature and outcome of the week, the resulting document should probably be called the 'summary by policymakers,' rather than the 'summary for policymakers.'

Can There Be a Positive Prognosis for Climate Negotiations?

Robert Stavins | Posted 05.30.2014 | Green
Robert Stavins

International negotiations continued under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The two most important countries in terms of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions -- China and the U.S. -- engaged in a war of words.

Will Europe Scrap Its Renewables Target? That Would Be Good News for the Economy and for the Environment

Robert Stavins | Posted 03.20.2014 | Green
Robert Stavins

Without the renewables mandate, the cap being planned for the EU ETS will be achieved at lower cost and will foster greater incentives for climate-friendly technological change.

The Warsaw Climate Negotiations, and Reason for Cautious Optimism

Robert Stavins | Posted 03.12.2014 | Green
Robert Stavins

The Warsaw meetings must be judged to be at least a modest success -- the baton was not dropped, rather it was passed successfully in this long relay race of negotiations.

Solar Diamond in the Rough

Edward Flattau | Posted 01.25.2014 | Green
Edward Flattau

My family had a fleeting chance to join the ranks of the super-rich. The year was 1933 in the midst of the Depression and my father was a young lawyer...

The Hidden Costs Of Environmentally-Damaging Businesses

Reuters | Posted 06.15.2013 | Green

OSLO, April 15 (Reuters) - Coal-fired power generation in Asia and cattle ranching in South America are the most damaging businesses for nature with...

While International Climate Negotiations Continue, the World's Ninth Largest Economy Takes an Important Step Forward

Robert Stavins | Posted 02.04.2013 | Green
Robert Stavins

I'm referring to the CO2 cap-and-trade allowance auction held by the State of California. The fact that the auction ran smoothly and compliance entities and others put their money down is one important step in establishing the program's credibility.

Cap-and-Trade, Carbon Taxes, and My Neighbor's Lovely Lawn

Robert Stavins | Posted 05.15.2013 | Green
Robert Stavins

In 1998 and for the subsequent eight years or so, I remained agnostic regarding what I viewed as the trade-offs between cap-and-trade and carbon taxes. What happened to change that? Three words: The Hamilton Project.

A Challenge for Climate Negotiators, and an Opportunity for Scholars

Robert Stavins | Posted 11.04.2012 | Green
Robert Stavins

The negotiating teams are now tasked under the Durban Platform with identifying a new comprehensive policy architecture. The negotiators are therefore hungry for new ideas, in particular for outside-the-box thinking.

Low Prices a Problem? Making Sense of Misleading Talk About Cap-and-Trade in Europe and the USA

Robert Stavins | Posted 04.28.2012 | Green
Robert Stavins

Since when are low prices considered to be a problem? To understand what's going on, we need to remind ourselves of the purpose (and promise) of a cap-and-trade regime, and then look at what's been happening in the respective markets.

Carbon Canopy: A Model for Solving Problems by Protecting Rather Than Destroying Our Natural Resources

Robert J. Cabin | Posted 05.01.2012 | Green
Robert J. Cabin

The Carbon Canopy is developing markets that advance forest preservation and sustainable management by compensating landowners for the environmental benefits created by healthy forests.

Reflections on Twenty Years of Policy Innovation

Robert Stavins | Posted 04.08.2012 | Green
Robert Stavins

In 2009, the U.S. Congress considered but ultimately failed to enact legislation aimed at limiting U.S. greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions. The bill unde...

Economics of the Environment

Robert Stavins | Posted 03.31.2012 | Green
Robert Stavins

The Sixth Edition of Economics of the Environment: Selected Readings has just been published by W. W. Norton & Company of New York and London. Throug...

Can the Durban Climate Negotiations Succeed?

Robert Stavins | Posted 01.28.2012 | Green
Robert Stavins

Two weeks of international climate negotiations begin today in Durban, South Africa. These are the Seventeenth Conference of the Parties (COP-17) of ...

The Promise and Problems of Pricing Carbon

Robert Stavins | Posted 01.01.2012 | Green
Robert Stavins

In the U.S., political polarization has decimated what had long been the key political constituency in the Congress for environmental action, namely, the middle, including both moderate Republicans and moderate Democrats.

A Golden Opportunity to Please Conservatives and Liberals Alike

Robert Stavins | Posted 09.26.2011 | Green
Robert Stavins

Market-based approaches to environmental protection should be lauded, not condemned, by political leaders, no matter what their party affiliation. Otherwise, there will be severe and perverse long-term consequences for the economy.

Eco-Friendly Microfinance: It's Time To Clean Up The Bandwagon

DeSmogBlog | Joanna Zelman | Posted 06.06.2011 | Green

Microfinance is intended to help the poor. The poor are often the most affected by climate change. Yet, some microfinance programs actually further co...

Cancún Summit No Solution to Global Warming

Jeffrey Rubin | Posted 05.25.2011 | Green
Jeffrey Rubin

There are basically two ways to cut carbon emissions, and neither one of them involves global climate change summits like the one just held in Cancún, Mexico.