The rapid fall in oil prices seems to have taken everyone by surprise. I’ve noted before that it puts the viability of the Keystone XL project in doubt. But its other effects are worth considering.
Overall, the fall in prices should have a beneficial effect on the U.S. economy. Since gasoline … More >
I used to spend the week between Christmas and New Year’s Eve with my in-laws in Portland, Oregon. A couple years ago, it snowed for two days straight, and the city shut down. My brother-in-law has taken it upon himself to find a warm-weather holiday destination for the family ever since.
As … More >
The safest prediction is that our Democratic President and Republican Congress will not in fact be able to work together. Their present gestures toward cooperation may mean nothing more than a willingness to accept the other side’s surrender.
But hope springs eternal. Are there areas where common ground exists? That seems … More >
I tend to think of the U.S. as ahead of most of the rest of the world when it comes to energy efficiency. Maybe not in the Germany or Japan league, but at least above the median. After all, our utilities are spending billions of dollars per year encouraging energy efficiency and … More >
This summer, the 14th cohort of the Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program graduated. The Beahrs ELP summer program brings mid-career professionals to Berkeley for professional training and I was fortunate enough to be the co-director of the program, alongside Dean Keith Gilless.
When Dick Beahrs gave us the means to start the … More >
At 10 am on Monday, June 16, 2014, Gazprom, a Russian gas monopoly, cut off supplies of gas to Ukraine. This is the third time in the last ten years when Gazprom has tried to use a cut-off to force the Ukrainian government to accept a deal it did not … More >
There has (rightly) been a lot of attention paid to the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule controlling greenhouse gas emissions from power plants pursuant to Clean Air Act, Section 111(d). All of that analysis — how effective the rule will be, how it will be implemented, the prospects for successful … More >
We empirical economists get very excited about finding or generating new data sets. There are big returns to splicing together different data sources to answer new and interesting questions. This is hard work and not everyone is good at it. Many datasets are hidden deep inside government vaults and some … More >
Many people who have studied the issue tell me that the Keystone XL issue is mostly symbolic, because the Alberta oil sands are going to be used one way or another. But I’m having some second thoughts because of arguments made (here) by Berkeley economist Max Aufhammer. He’s a pretty hard-headed … More >