“Air quality has improved dramatically over the past decades, and air quality will continue to improve under the existing standards,” said Howard Feldman, director of regulatory affairs for the American Petroleum Institute, which lobbies for the oil industry. “The current review of health studies has not identified compelling evidence for more stringent standards, and current standards are protective of public health.”
Ignoring for the moment the obvious conflict of interest, this raising an interesting question. In modeling the effects of a tightening of emissions regulations, should we treat the regulation as a one-time shock to a dynamic system that puts us on a new path to a better steady state (as implied by this quote), or do we need a series of interventions that prevents reversion to a previous path?
In their paper, Francis and Vavrus suggested that a rapidly warming Arctic should interfere with the jet stream, the river of air high above us that flows eastward around the northern hemisphere and brings with it our weather. Sometimes, the jet stream flows relatively directly from west to east; but other times, it takes long, wavy loops, as in the image above. And according to Francis and Vavrus, Arctic warming should make the jet stream more wavy and loopy on average – some have called it “drunk” -- with dramatic weather consequences.
Congressional climate wars were dominated Tuesday by the U.S. Senate, which spent the day debating, and ultimately failing to pass, a bill approving the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. While all that was happening, and largely unnoticed, the House was busy doing what it does best: attacking science.
H.R. 1422, which passed 229-191, would shake up the EPA’s Scientific Advisory Board, placing restrictions on those pesky scientists and creating room for experts with overt financial ties to the industries affected by EPA regulations.
The bill is being framed as a play for transparency: Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas, argued that the board’s current structure is problematic because it “excludes industry experts, but not officials for environmental advocacy groups.” The inclusion of industry experts, he said, would right this injustice.
But the White House, which threatened to veto the bill, said it would “negatively affect the appointment of experts and would weaken the scientific independence and integrity of the SAB.”
2. Your assessment of local fisheries based on what you have seen working with the SAFMC and well as the sanctuary.
1a. That is an old study. Why is it drawing interest now?
1b. The statistical model that predicts collapse is very simple with a flow variable (collapsed fisheries that varies from year to year) regressed on a stock variable (cumulative number of years in the time series data). I created some data where the dependent variable (y in the paper) is a random number between 1 and 10 and the independent variable (x in the paper) is cumulative beginning with 1 and ending with 40 (years). My results aren't as impressive as those in the papers but it indicates a statistically significant relationship ... when there is none. If my simulated data is for the years 1970 to 2010 it would predict that all fisheries are gone by some year in the future too.
In short, I don't trust the model that generates 2048 as doomsday.
You have received this email as confirmation that your Elsevier Editorial System (EES) account for [redacted] has been added to your consolidated user profile.
Currently, the following EES accounts are linked to your consolidated profile:
apen: Applied Energy dib: Data in Brief ecolec: Ecological Economics ecolet: Economics Letters forpol: Forest Policy and Economics jeem: Journal of Environmental Economics and Management JEMA: Journal of Environmental Management jfe: Journal of Forest Economics joep: Journal of Economic Psychology ree: Resource and Energy Economics
Or, that I've foolishly agreed to referee another paper. Sigh.
Let's have our informal AERE Happy Hour after the Distinguished Guest Lecture ("Life as a Lab: Using Field Experiments in Economics" John List [see note below]) on Saturday. This is a great chance to meet old friends and new and organize your dinner party!
What: AERE Happy Hour
Why: Meet old friends and new and organize your dinner party
Where: Hotel lobby bar (i.e.., Pulse -- "At 5:00 pm, an audible heartbeat will welcome the beginning of an eight-hour social hour as Pulse transforms into a vibrant lounge. As the evening progresses, the bar staff intensifies the showcasing of mixology behind the bar by giving demonstrations on how to make classic and new trendy drinks. The color of the iconic sail will change with the mood of the evening ending with a heightened pulsating array of radiant colors as a salute to the evening.")
When: 6:15 pm
See you in Atlanta!
Note: Speaking of field experiments, I withdrew my field experiment paper just now. Buy me a beer at happy hour and I'll explain why!
I'll try to post on that note soon (if I can get ready for my other sessions). Here is the excuse that I gave the SEA "We've been waiting on some essential data and it has not arrived." Nor will it ever.
The Administrator, in consultation with the Department of State and the United States Trade Representative, shall annually prepare and certify a report to the Congress regarding whether China and India have adopted greenhouse gas emissions standards at least as strict as those standards required under this Act. If the Administrator determines that China and India have not adopted greenhouse gas emissions standards at least as stringent as those set forth in this Act, the Administrator shall notify each Member of Congress of his determination, and shall release his determination to the media.
A climate deal between China and the United States, the world’s No. 1 and No. 2 carbon polluters, is viewed as essential to concluding a new global accord. Unless Beijing and Washington can resolve their differences, climate experts say, few other countries will agree to mandatory cuts in emissions, and any meaningful worldwide pact will be likely to founder. ...
As part of the agreement, Mr. Obama announced that the United States would emit 26 percent to 28 percent less carbon in 2025 than it did in 2005. That is double the pace of reduction it targeted for the period from 2005 to 2020.
China’s pledge to reach peak carbon emissions by 2030, if not sooner, is even more remarkable. To reach that goal, Mr. Xi pledged that so-called clean energy sources, like solar power and windmills, would account for 20 percent of China’s total energy production by 2030.
Administration officials acknowledged that Mr. Obama could face opposition to his plans from a Republican-controlled Congress. While the agreement with China needs no congressional ratification, lawmakers could try to roll back Mr. Obama’s initiatives, undermining the United States’ ability to meet the new reduction targets.
Any revision of this paper will include a citation to:
Banzhaf, H Spencer. 2014. "Retrospectives: The Cold-War Origins of the Value of Statistical Life." Journal of Economic Perspectives, 28(4): 213-26.
This paper traces the history of the "Value of Statistical Life" (VSL), which today is used routinely in benefit-cost analysis of life-saving investments. The "value of statistical life" terminology was introduced by Thomas Schelling (1968) in his essay, "The Life You Save May Be Your Own." Schelling made the crucial move to think in terms of risk rather than individual lives, with the hope to dodge the moral thicket of valuing "life." But as recent policy debates have illustrated, his move only thickened it. Tellingly, interest in the subject can be traced back another twenty years before Schelling's essay to a controversy at RAND Corporation following its earliest application of operations research to defense planning. RAND wanted to avoid valuing pilot's lives but the Air Force insisted they confront the issue. Thus, the VSL is not only well acquainted with political controversy; it was born from it.
Although association preferences documented in our study theoretically could be a consequence of either mating or shoaling preferences in the different female groups investigated (should we cite the crappy Gabor paper here?), shoaling preferences are unlikely drivers of the documented patterns both because of evidence from previous research and inconsistencies with a priori predictions.
If that’s not a candidate for #overlyhonestmethods, we’re not sure what is. Let’s hope they were focusing too hard on the science to notice the citations.
Appalachian State University’s Department of Economics has one of the world’s top programs in the fields of experimental economics and environmental economics, according to a prestigious worldwide organization that disseminates economics research.
In its report “Top 10% Institutions and Economists,” Research Papers in Economics ranked Appalachian’s Department of Economics in the Walker College of Business 27th in the world in experimental economics and 81st in the world in environmental economics. The rankings were released in October and include all academic and non-academic research institutions globally.
Among U.S. universities, Appalachian’s experimental economics group ranked 14th behind the University of Virginia and California Institute of Technology and ahead of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard University. Appalachian’s environmental faculty ranked 34th among U.S. universities, ahead of the University of California-Davis and the University of Wisconsin. ...
This is pretty cool. I have no idea if it's accurate but still cool.
I don't doubt that wolves have had an impact on Yellowstone. But my inner economist has to ask, are we now better off? How do we know that this new steady state (if in fact it is steasy) is 'better' than the previous state without the wolves?
Oh, and if reintroducing wolves is this great, what would happen if we reintroduced dinosaurs?
I have been assigned the interesting task of ranking professional journals in the natural resource and environmental economics field in order to provide guidance for our university's promotion and tenure process. Of course I am familiar with existing quantitative tools for ranking professional journals such as Impact Factors. However, being on old survey researcher, I want to take an informal, un-scientific poll of RESECON participants.
In the spirit of importance-significance analysis, professional journals could be ranked based on both the significance of the journal and the importance of the articles published. For the purposes of this survey, let the "significance" of a journal be defined as the professional prestige of the journal. Let the "importance" of a journal be defined as the practical value to society of articles published. Thus, based on these definitions, a journal could have a high significance level (e.g., professionals consider the journal highly prestigious) but have a low importance level (e.g., professionals consider the articles published to have low practical value), and vice-versa.
Here is the survey question:
Based on the significance and importance of the journal as defined above and where you can weight these two factors however you deem best, please provide your ranking from 1 to 5 (where 1 is the best) of what you consider to be the five (5) top-tier professional journals in the natural resource and environmental economics field ...
Here is my list:
Journal of Environmental Economics and Management
Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists
Environmental and Resource Economics
Resource and Energy Economics
I left out the agricultural economics journals. While you might rather have your paper published in those relative to my 1-5, there is too much agriculture to call them environmental and resource economics journals.
I did a bit of forecasting with JAERE. In my own decision making I already consider JAERE to be the top journal (this means that I don't send my papers there :).
I would rank Marine Resource Economics 6th and Ecological Economics 7th. I rarely read a paper in Environment and Development Economics.
Petition to reinstate the Pollution Abatement Costs and Expenditures (PACE) survey:
We, the undersigned, agree that the Pollution Abatement Costs and Expenditures (PACE) survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau is a valuable resource for research and policy analysis. The PACE survey provides the only comprehensive source of data on expenditures related to environmental protection for the United States manufacturing sector. The facility-level PACE data are used to produce published aggregate data at industry, state, and national levels and are merged with other Census data sets for research purposes.
We urge that the PACE survey be resumed and be collected over time on an annual basis, to support future evidence-based policy evaluations of the effectiveness and economic impact of environmental programs, and to improve the design and performance of those programs.
Please sign by entering your contact information and clicking "Sign Petition" at the bottom of the page. Your contact information will only be used to show support for resuming the PACE Survey. Thank you for your support.
Wayne Gray, Professor of Economics, Clark University and Executive Director, Boston Census Research Data Center
I filled up for $2.77/gallon driving back from the airport last night. You can't get it for less than $3 in Boone:
The national average price of gas tomorrow will drop below $3.00 per gallon for the first time since Dec. 22, 2010, ending its longest streak ever above that price, according to AAA. AAA estimates that lower gas prices are helping consumers save at least $250 million per day on gasoline compared to early summer when the national average reached $3.68 per gallon. ...
The national average price of gas has remained more expensive than $3.00 per gallon for 1,409 consecutive days. During that 46-month period, gas prices averaged $3.52 per gallon and reached as high as $3.98 per gallon on May 5, 2011.
More than 60 percent of all U.S. stations are selling gas for less than $3.00 per gallon today. Consumers can find at least one station selling gas for less than $3.00 per gallon in nearly every state. The drop below $3.00 per gallon is significant because about 40 percent of American adults believe that gasoline is “too high” when the price reaches that level, according to a AAA survey conducted in March. ...
AAA anticipates gasoline prices may continue to drop in the near term, but it is possible that prices in many areas will begin to stabilize soon. Unless there are unexpected developments, gasoline should remain relatively inexpensive this winter due to lower demand and typical seasonal trends. By spring, higher gas prices may return due to refinery maintenance, increased demand and a return to summer-blend gasoline. ...
Gas prices typically decline in the autumn due to decreased driving and the switchover to winter-blend gasoline, but prices have fallen faster than many expected this year due to sharply lower crude oil prices. The price of West Texas Intermediate crude oil has dropped more than $20 per barrel since late June due to strong production and concerns about the global economy, particularly in Europe and Asia. There also are reports that some OPEC nations, such as Saudi Arabia, would be willing to let prices fall to maintain a competitive market share.
Crude oil is the main cost associated with gasoline and represents about two-thirds of the price of a gallon of gas. It is estimated that every ten dollar per barrel change in the price of crude oil results in a 25-cent change in the price of a gallon of gasoline.
"This blog aims to look at more of the microeconomic ideas that can be used toward environmental ends. Bringing to bear a large quantity of external sources and articles, this blog presents a clear vision of what economic environmentalism can be."
Don't believe what they're saying
And allow me a quick moment to gush: ... The env-econ.net blog was more or less a lifeline in that period of my life, as it was one of the few ways I stayed plugged into the env. econ scene. -- Anonymous
... the Environmental Economics blog ... is now the default homepage on my browser (but then again, I guess I am a wonk -- a word I learned on the E.E. blog). That is a very nice service to the profession. -- Anonymous
"... I try and read the blog everyday and have pointed it out to other faculty who have their students read it for class. It is truly one of the best things in the blogosphere." -- Anonymous