Browsing articles tagged with " environment"
May 19, 2015
boyce

True cost of fossil fuels

A new IMF working paper estimates world spending on fossil fuel subsidies:

Fossil fuel companies are benefitting from global subsidies of $5.3tn (£3.4tn) a year, equivalent to $10m a minute every day, according to a startling new estimate by the International Monetary Fund.

The IMF calls the revelation “shocking” and says the figure is an “extremely robust” estimate of the true cost of fossil fuels. The $5.3tn subsidy estimated for 2015 is greater than the total health spending of all the world’s governments.

Read more here.

Mar 9, 2015
boyce

Monopoly power v. solar power

The Washington Post reports from the electricity battleground in the clean energy transition, where surprising political realignments are emerging:

“Conservatives support solar — they support it even more than progressives do,” said Bryan Miller, co-chairman of the Alliance for Solar Choice and a vice president of public policy for Sunrun, a California solar provider. “It’s about competition in its most basic form. The idea that you should be forced to buy power from a state-sponsored monopoly and not have an option is about the least conservative thing you can imagine.”

Read more here.

Mar 7, 2015
boyce

Banned in China: know your air

The powerful film (with English subtitles) on pollution – initially hailed, then banned, by Chinese officialdom:

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T6X2uwlQGQM

From New York Times story on the ban:

On Friday evening [the day the film was banned], Xinhua, the state news agency, posted on Twitter, which is also blocked here, that “President Xi Jinping vows to punish, with an iron hand, any violators who destroy ecology or environment, with no exceptions.” That night, the United States Embassy air monitor in Beijing rated the air “hazardous.”

Read more here.

POSTSCRIPT: Chinese officials are not the alone in trying to suppress bad news on the environment. Check out the latest from Florida, here.

Dec 15, 2014
boyce
Comments Off

Let them eat toxic waste?

A video made by UMass-Amherst students compares wealth-based to rights-based principles for allocating environmental quality:

Sep 1, 2014
boyce
Comments Off

Dividends for all?

From Peter Barnes on PBS Newshour, discussing his new book With Liberty and Dividends for All:

Dividends from common wealth, by contrast, unite society by putting all its members in the same boat. The income everyone receives is a right, not a handout. This changes the story, the psychology and the politics.

Read more here.

Apr 24, 2014
boyce

Jobs, what jobs?

Movement Generation skewers pipeline “job creators”:

Source: http://www.movementgeneration.org/keystone-xl-has-a-job-for-you-video-resource-page

Mar 21, 2014
econ4org

Rent in a warming world

Econ4’s James Boyce explains what rent’s got to do with climate change:

Read his piece here.

Mar 21, 2014
boyce

Energy efficiency takes off

Some good news from the energy efficiency frontlines:

[I]nvestment in energy efficiency is large and growing: $300 billion in 2011 by companies and governments in 11 countries. That is the same as total investment in electricity generation from oil, gas and coal, though less than investment in renewable electricity plus renewable-energy subsidies. But it saves more in emissions of carbon dioxide than all the spending on renewables, and pays for itself.

Read more here.

Dec 27, 2013
boyce

Carbon bubble

Sean McElwee and Lew Daly write about the disconnect between valuing oil and gas reserves and valuing the future of our planet:

 A whopping two-thirds of reserves listed on markets are potentially worthless.

Steve Waygood, head of Sustainability Research at Aviva Investors, a global asset management company, sums up the conundrum: “Valuations of the oil and gas sector still assume that they will be able to take all proven and probable reserves out of the ground and burn them. Based on credible data we cannot be allowed to do that…” So in much the same way that pre-Great Recession housing prices were based on the assumption that their values would continue to rise and homeowners would pay off their mortgages, the valuation of oil and gas companies is based on the assumption that they will be able to extract resources that must remain in the ground.

Read their piece here.

Jul 7, 2013
boyce

Tax students, or polluters?

From Robert Reich’s blog:

A basic economic principle is government ought to tax what we want to discourage, and not tax what we want to encourage.

For example, if we want less carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, we should tax carbon polluters. On the other hand, if we want more students from lower-income families to be able to afford college, we shouldn’t put a tax on student loans.

Read his post here.

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