I have read a number of news stories about air pollution in the major Chinese cities recently. A soupy smog of particulates, ozone, sulfur and nitrogen oxides hangs over Beijing, Tianjin and other northern cities. The concentration of particulate matter (PM2.5) in Beijing recently registered at 501 μg/m3, more than 15 … 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 >
You know this already, but let’s review:
Climate change is a global emissions problem.
California produces about 1% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions.
Over the next few decades, the majority of emissions will come from developing countries.
If we don’t solve the problem in the developing world, we don’t solve the problem.
The … More >
Virtually all economists working on climate change agree that we should price greenhouse-gas emissions. Doing so creates an incentive to reduce emissions without the government directing specific technology adoptions or activity changes, that is, without “picking winners.”
Nearly as many economists agree that we should subsidize basic R&D. Doing so, accelerates … More >
While much of the U.S. has been dealing with severe winter weather, California is experiencing a record dry spell. The clear skies have also brought some cold nights and, with them, wood smoke.
What I’ve noticed in my neighborhood is that the desire for a cozy wood fire cuts across political … More >
Cooking dinner, as it turns out, is one of the most serious public health and environmental problems in the world. There’s a common misperception that environmental concerns are just a First World luxury. But the cookstove example shows that the global poor, too, are in need of better, more efficient, … More >
Our cities have the potential to be a key climate change solution. Already they are hot-beds of innovation in local and global approaches to the nexus of sustainability and quality of life. People who live in cities drive less, use less energy to heat, cool, and light their homes, and … More >
The latest IPCC report proves that scientists are unwavering in their view that human carbon emissions are causing dangerous climate change. In the scientific world, climate denial has no traction. It isn’t gaining traction in the judicial or congressional worlds either.
First, the judiciary. A three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit, … More >
Are we really being tricked, bullied or seduced into burning fossil fuels? That seems to be the message behind two arguments made recently by prominent advocates for climate action: we should blame the producers of fossil fuels for the failure to make progress on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The Union of Concerned … More >