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Energy Efficiency and Energy Use: The Rebound Effect is Overplayed

Trying to put the rebound effect for energy efficiency in its rightful place is like playing a game of wack-a-mole. Predictably every couple of years, someone new discovers the counter-intuitive appeal of showing how more efficient energy policies...

Posted January 24, 2013    

Foreign Policy: Why Bloomberg Endorsed Obama

When it rains, it pours. First came Sandy, the incarnation of the Rumsfeldian “unknown unknowns.” Then came the political hurricane, with three-term New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg endorsing Barack Obama for his second....

Posted November 2, 2012    

326 consecutive months of above average global temperatures

Paul Volcker may have $3 billion of “I told you so” J.P. Morgan Chase losses to point to. Al Gore has 326 months, and counting. Somehow I doubt either feels gleeful, although I wouldn’t blame them:April was the 326th month in a row the global...

Posted May 25, 2012    

This Jacket Will Not Stop Global Warming

Patagonia, the outdoor clothing and apparel company, ran an eye-catching, full-page ad in The New York Times the day after Thanksgiving, the busiest shopping day of the year. The headline, “Don’t Buy this Jacket,” was above a photo of one of its...

Posted December 19, 2011    

Imagine What A Real Cap Could Do

RGGI (pronounced “Reggie”), the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, has capped carbon dioxide emissions in ten northeastern U.S. states. Well, it isn’t much of a cap, given how loose it really is. Still, the latest analysis that tries to follow the...

Posted December 15, 2011    

Naomi Klein is Half Right About Capitalism vs. the Climate

Naomi Klein is always worth reading. If you haven’t seen Capitalism vs. the Climate, go ahead. I’ll wait. Her 10,000-word exposé is well worth the effort. It makes the essential point that addressing climate change means reorganizing how the world...

Posted December 6, 2011    

What Nuclear Proliferation & Abolition Have In Common

Global warming has characteristics that make it unique among most public policy problems. Its effects are more global, more long-term, and more uncertain than most. That triple whammy makes sensible national and global policy exceedingly difficult....

Posted November 14, 2011    

Helicopter Parents Should Worry About The Air

My wife and I have no car, no TV, and a no-screens policy around our 8-month-old. We carry him around in an organic cotton wrap. His favorite toys are wood, his baby soap is plant-based, his only pacifier is his left thumb. He has yet to taste baby...

Posted November 12, 2011    

Cold, Hard Climate Economics

Global warming is happening faster and with more intensity than anyone expected, yet the fossil-fueled right has succeeded in removing the issue almost entirely from the agenda through a false pretense of defending "free markets." In response,...

Posted November 10, 2011    

oPower's Gaming Technology Gets Neighbors to Compete to Save Energy

Wasting time Playing games online is fun. Even staid old utilities are catching on by now. In truth, ConEd didn’t come up with much of a game. It’s more like a guided tour of energy savings around your house, even though the link may say “play now...

Posted November 3, 2011    

Nature Accomplishes What Politics Won’t

A freak October snowstorm blanketed New York yesterday, likely setting a new October snow record. In the meantime, Bangkok is trying to cope with one of the worst floods in history. Standard journalistic decorum demands that I mention right about...

Posted October 30, 2011    

NIMBYism NY Edition, or Risky Energy Near Major Cities

Forty miles north of New York City is the Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant. I don’t care what you think of nuclear power, having an aging plant within forty miles of 20 million people isn’t the outcome of any rational policy decision. Still, Indian...

Posted October 27, 2011