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Resources Magazine: Praying for Wind: Pollution Solution?

Before the wheels touched down last March at Beijing’s spectacular airport, we could smell the pollution. Burning eyes, raspy throats, and persistent coughing got our attention faster than smart phone apps which registered particulate levels (PM 2.5) off the charts—15 times worse than the World Health Organization’s acceptable standard. We were lucky. The levels had […]

US-China Agreement: Benefits of Modest Non-Binding Deal may be Mainly Political

A lot has been written about the new climate agreement between the US and China made at the APEC summit this week. Almost all of it is very positive, framing the agreement as a major policy breakthrough with big impacts on both international climate negotiations and on the climate change problem itself. I confess I’m […]

Cap and Trade in China: How Might It Work?

China plans to start a nationwide cap-and-trade market in 2016. But can China, whose economy still contains many nonmarket features, properly design and implement a fundamentally market-based policy? In our new RFF discussion paper, my coauthors (RFF’s Richard Morgenstern, Zhongmin Wang, and Xu Liu) and I attempt to answer this question by examining cap-and-trade pilot […]

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 […]

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 […]

US Shale Gas Development in Review

The United States has seen rapid recent development of shale gas. What are the factors behind the notable growth in the past decade? And what does it mean for shale gas development elsewhere in the world? Alan Krupnick and I examine the history of the US shale gas boom in a new RFF discussion paper. […]

China’s Carbon Tax Plan

Xinhua reported recently that China will introduce a carbon tax. The actual announcement by Jia Chen from the Ministry of Finance buried the mention of the new carbon tax within a broader set of tax reform goals. Other reforms mentioned included the use of taxes to promote innovation and the development of small- and medium-sized businesses. This is […]

Would Coal Exports Reduce Emissions?

Persistent low natural gas prices and, to some extent, EPA regulation are driving fuel switching from coal to gas in the electric power sector, reducing domestic demand for U.S. coal. The U.S. already exports a lot of coal, but the trend toward gas has led some firms to more aggressively pursue export markets. Increasing exports, […]

Aiming Low: The Ambition Deficit in Global Emissions Reductions

As in Durban, a notable concern at this COP is the “ambition deficit”—that is, the significant gap between the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s recommended level of emissions reductions—those required to limit global temperature rise to 2°C—and the level of emissions reductions currently committed to by countries worldwide. In other words, everyone is aiming low […]

RFF Feature: Tax Incentives for Developing Sewage Treatment Capacity in China

RFF’s Anthony Liu and coauthor Junjie Zhang examine the uneven development of sewage treatment plants throughout China and explore the relationship between tax incentives and investments in such infrastructure. To read the piece in its entirety, click here.