On Proposed Regulations for Arctic Offshore Oil Drilling

This entry previously appeared as a comment on the National Journal’s Energy Insiders forum “Can Arctic Drilling Be Done Safely?”. On August 15, the Obama administration took a long awaited step forward in the development of safety standards for Arctic offshore drilling operations. The submission of proposed regulations by the Department of the Interior (DOI) […]

Taking Steps toward Green Growth in China

For decades, China’s government has focused on economic growth and has paid less attention to the associated environmental consequences. But today, the need for environmental regulation is more widely recognized as a critical ingredient for continued, sustainable growth in the world’s most populous country. In a new RFF discussion paper, Green Growth (for China): A Literature […]

Exporting the Cost of Dams

Last year, former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi proclaimed: “We will defend each drop of Nile water with our blood if necessary.” He was referring to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam that Ethiopia is constructing, which may affect the flow of the Nile River into Egypt. A year later, talks between the two nations still have […]

Stimulating Shale Gas Development in China: What Lessons to Learn from the US Experience?

China’s pressing need to reduce coal consumption has created a strong demand for the natural gas trapped in its large shale reserves. The Chinese government has already experimented with a number of policies aimed at promoting shale gas development, but building an industry that can successfully utilize these reserves will be difficult. Although the Ministry […]

A Tale of Two Parks (In One)

Without intending to, the team of civil servants that in 1990 created Guatemala’s Maya Biosphere Reserve (MBR) launched a forest conservation policy experiment. In an ecologically rich region where ranchers and farmers were illegally clearing forests at an astounding clip, they established a huge (two million hectare) protected area with two distinct management regimes—a core […]

Fixing Emissions Trading Imbalances with a Price Floor

The centerpiece of Europe Union’s climate policy, the cap-and-trade Emissions Trading System (ETS), is being hobbled by a large oversupply of emissions allowances in the market. Since 2008, the ETS has rapidly accumulated a two gigaton surplus of allowances. The oversupply of allowances and low level of emissions is the result of a number of […]

Update on Ending the Export Ban: What It Means for US Gasoline Prices

Data aficionados among our readers will appreciate that it is best to analyze price movements using as disaggregated data as possible, both temporally and spatially. In the original version of our recent issue brief, we used annual data.  But with more time to acquire data, we found monthly data series.  Importantly, these new data include […]

Ivory Stockpiles: Will Destroying Them Really Help Stop Poaching?

Just over five years ago, sanctioned auctions of ivory stockpiled in Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, and Zimbabwe raised more than $15 million for elephant conservation. Now, Tanzania is set to destroy $50 million of ivory stockpile, following the lead of the US, France, Hong Kong, and China. The US is also taking steps to further […]

Ending the Export Ban: What It Means for US Gasoline Prices

Last week, top Democrats on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee requested a comprehensive review of what would happen—in terms of energy prices, consumer prices, and more—if the US were to lift its ban on oil exports. In a new RFF issue brief, together with Stephen Brown, Charles Mason, and Jan Mares, we tackle […]

Forty Years Later, an Oil Crisis Retrospective

Though the 1973 Yom Kippur War lasted only 20 days, the outbreak of Arab-Israeli hostilities was followed by two major events, with implications that are still debated today. The first was a politically motivated and largely symbolic initiative by a group of Arab oil producers (the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries) to form a […]