Sign up | Login with →

Posts by Gernot Wagner Subscribe

Single-Action Bias

We all want to do something, anything. We don’t just want to sit idle and watch events unfold around us. Call it “action bias.” Then there’s “single-action bias.” We all want to do something, anything, but once we’ve done that one thing, we move on...

Posted August 9, 2011    

All of The Above

When most talk climate policy, they talk mitigation: decrease our ever increasing flow of carbon into the atmospheric sewer. Another piece of the puzzle is adaptation. We are way past the point where mitigation alone will do. We know we’ll feel the...

Posted August 8, 2011    

In Memoriam: Steve Schneider Takes On Skeptics

If you think things are bad, listen to a group of climate scientists talk about geoengineering—literally hacking the planet. I had the pleasure of attending the Asimolar geoengineering conference last March and, while there, had the distinct...

Posted July 21, 2011    

Don’t Buy Our Product

The business of electric utilities is to provide reliable, affordable, and (increasingly) clean electricity—except when it is not. Con Ed recently started a campaign extolling the virtues of saving electrons. Imagine a business that runs ads telling...

Posted July 20, 2011    

We Have Too Few Nuclear Accidents

I live in New York City, or in other words, I live within 40 miles of the Indian Point nuclear plant. Let’s just say that having a 50-year-old reactor that close to 20 million people may not be the most rational siting decision. You don’t need to...

Posted July 13, 2011    

Think Transportation, Not Cars

The Sunday New York Times comes with its own Automobiles section. Nothing unusual about that. Many papers have one as a convenient way to cash in on whatever is left of the classifieds. Certified pre-owned BMWs anyone? The section also comes...

Posted July 11, 2011    

Carbon Output "Socialism On A Planetary Scale"

One of the more powerful quotes about the importance of taking nature seriously goes back to Oystein Dahle: “Socialism collapsed because it did not allow the market to tell the economic truth. Capitalism may collapse because it does not allow the...

Posted July 7, 2011    

Carbon Trading Grows Up

When someone robs a bank, nobody challenges the legitimacy of banks. They suggest instead that the bank find better security. Why should carbon markets be any different? Wednesday last week the European Commission (EC) discovered cyber thefts of...

Posted January 28, 2011    

The long and the short of energy efficiency

David Owen asks a provocative question in the current New Yorker: If our machines use less energy, will we just use them more? He more or less says yes. The real answer comes in two parts. For now—over days, weeks, months, and even years—...

Posted December 21, 2010    

One person's cost, another's opportunity

Transitioning into a new, low-carbon energy future costs money. No doubt about it. Yet the flip-side of cost is opportunity. Pew just released a new study on Global Clean Power: A $2.3 Trillion Opportunity. Is this just a smart attempt at rebranding...

Posted December 9, 2010    

No jobs in economic modeling

Co-authored with Nat Keohane. Last week Nat Keohane and I tried to shed some light on the inner workings of economic models when it comes to jobs. Among other more specific statements around climate policy, we also said that, many macroeconomic...

Posted December 7, 2010    

What's the matter with Arkansas?

Midwestern states have traditionally been reluctant to embrace cap and trade. Now it looks like they may well turn into some of the larger beneficiaries of the California cap-and-trade system. The largest supplier of likely carbon offsets for the...

Posted November 30, 2010