Exploring Ethical Dimensions of Climate Negotiation
December 18, 2017
At this yearâ€™s United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP23), delegates from around the world worked on strategies to accelerate progress toward the goals of the 2015 Paris Agreement. In Bonn, Germany, as negotiators worked to find common ground, MIT researchers from different technology and social science backgrounds shared their ideas for climate action.
Russia and the Post-Paris World: A New Energy Landscape?
December 4, 2017
In a new CEEPR working paper, the authors find that climate-related actions outside of Russia decrease Russiaâ€™s energy exports and lower Russiaâ€™s GDP growth rate. The paper offers suggestions for key elements of the Post-Paris strategy, including diversification of economy, moving to low-carbon energy, and investing in human capital development.
Helping Mexico Design an Effective Climate Policy
November 17, 2017
MIT researchers are working with the Mexican government on carbon pricing options to meet the countryâ€™s climate goals under the Paris Agreement. For further reading please visit the MIT News site here.
Linking Heterogeneous Climate Policies (Consistent with the Paris Agreement)
November 3, 2017
International linkage of climate policies can play an important role in ensuring adequate climate ambition under the Paris Agreement. A new Working Paper looks at the opportunities for â€“ and barriers to â€“ linkage of heterogeneous regional, national and subnational climate policies.
New Study Finds Expected Savings from School Energy Efficiency Upgrade Outpace Actual Returns
September 27, 2017
Innovative study finds energy efficiency investments made at California public schools may not provide as much benefit as officials expected.
Fuel-efficient Cars Often Paired with Gas Guzzlers, Study Finds
September 26, 2017
A study released Tuesday by economists at UC Davis, Yale, and MIT shows that families who own fuel-efficient cars tend to buy big, powerful gas guzzlers as their second vehicle, largely defeating the purpose of the little petrol sippers in their garages.
Replacing Coal by Gas: An Effective Strategy to Reduce CO2 Emissions?
September 15, 2017
Now more than ever, natural gas is hoped to effectively help shale gas producing regions reduce their CO2 emissions, by largely replacing their coal energy input. At the same time, the domestic replacement of coal by gas releases amounts of tradable coal, whose supply meets the foreign energy demand, contributing to increase emissions in the rest of the world.
Black Carbon Problems in Transportation
August 17, 2017
Black carbon particulates in â€œsootâ€ emissions have significant detrimental impacts on public health, climate change and food production; and diesel engines in the transportation sector are a major source of such emissions. There are cost-effective technologies that can mitigate the emissions. However, a wide range of policies at all levels of government are needed to incentivize the uptake of emission-mitigating technologies.
The Behavioral Effect of Pigovian Regulation: Evidence from a Field Experiment
July 17, 2017
Market-Âbased regulation, and in particular Pigovian taxes/subsidies, have the potential to make consumers internalize socially harmful external effects associated with their choices. Recent behavioral literature, however, suggests that explicit financial penalties/rewards may undermine willingness to behave prosocially.
Modeling Unit Commitment in Political Context
May 9, 2017
Electricity sector restructuring processes can undergo long, protracted transition periods that are not well-captured in typical power systems operation models. We create a tractable dispatch optimization with important political considerations for a region of China, demonstrating interactions among institutions relevant for ongoing power sector reforms.
Early Nuclear Retirements in Deregulated U.S. Markets
April 13, 2017
U.S. nuclear reactors have been retiring at an unprecedented pace for the last few years. Tens of gigawatts of zero-emission nuclear capacity are now at risk of retiring prematurely, before the end of their operating license. We examine the root causes of this phenomena and discuss regulatory options for policymakers.
A Green Bargain? Impacts of an Energy Saving Program on China’s Iron and Steel Industry
March 21, 2017
The impact of environmental regulation on firm productivity has been long been debated, however, mainly for western economies and with limited firm-level evidence. We study the impact of a large-scale national energy saving program in China on firm productivity in the iron and steel industry and find positive effects on productivity growth.
Tropical Forests, Tipping Points, and the Social Cost of Deforestation
March 17, 2017
The existence of a forest-savanna tipping point implies that changes in forest resilience affect the marginal economic value of a standing forest. We propose a new framework for calculating the economic value of a standing tropical forest, and explore the implications of tipping points on the design of optimal land-use policy and payments for ecosystem services.
When Do States Disrupt Industries? Electric Cars in Germany and the United States
March 17, 2017
When do states drive green industrial change? We show that in mature industries with powerful incumbents the ability of the state to organize private interests in support of technological change is critical to develop innovation policy. States with competitive state-business relations can accomplish this more easily than states with cooperative state-business relations. In the case of the auto industry, the United States adopted a policy package to commercialize electric cars. Germany, instead, adopted a wait-and-see policy based on coordination with automakers.
Anticipation and Environmental Regulation
February 10, 2017
Environmental standards can affect new-equipment sales and used-equipment retirements. We identify two additional effects, of anticipation, on the flow and stock of regulated equipment, and discuss the implications for policy design and program evaluation.
Limits to Arbitrage in Electricity Markets: A case study of MISO
January 30, 2017
Like in other deregulated markets, financial players were introduced to the Midwest electricity market to arbitrage price differences that distort planning decisions. Unlike other markets, this did not seemed to be working. Instead, we find some players bidding in the wrong direction and consistently losing money, possibly in an attempt to manipulate market prices.
Wind Capacity Investments: Inefficient Drivers and Long-Term Impacts
January 23, 2017
In a new CEEPR Working Paper, Ian Schneider and Mardavij Roozbehani explain how existing production-based subsidies for wind energy bias marginal investments to underweight the market value of energy produced.
Estimating the Future Supply of Shale Oil: A Bakken Case Study
January 19, 2017
How much shale oil do we have left? And how much of that can be recovered economically? A new estimation technique suggests that, in the Bakken play, roughly 8 billion barrels of the remaining shale oil resources could be developed at a cost of $50/barrel.