Let’s face it, regulators won’t let U.S. utilities die; they SHOULD update rules to better serve customers by allocating costs to those who benefit from them

The tally of utilities and governments around the world imposing or boosting fixed charges for grid-supplied electricity is rising to make up for the decline in traditional, rate-based revenue.  In the U.S. this has been due primarily to ever-improving energy efficiency and the end of year-to-year increases in electricity usage. Now, the demand curve looks […]

Actions speaking louder than advocacy: Microsoft programming for profit with carbon neutrality

The number of companies taking tangible steps to prepare for and prosper in a lower-carbon economy is growing — even absent a national carbon tax or cap-and-trade regime.  Their actions speak much louder than the hyperbole that many advocates are using to argue for and against paying for carbon emissions. One of the most instructive […]

Fast Fix: The public list of companies preparing for a carbon tax keeps growing, but . . .

UPDATED . . . whether the U.S. and more governments will focus their nation’s economic priorities on a cleaner energy future and a healthier environment with a carbon tax or cap and trade program seems as bleak as ever. But for how much longer? If you know of others, help me keep track here of […]

Wind industry’s proposal to phase out its Production Tax Credit could shift energy subsidy debate

By Bill Opalka, Guest Contributor A proposal by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) to phase out of its key federal subsidyby year-end 2018 in return for its immediate extension could mark a new era in assessing the fiscal costs and the economic and environmental benefits of all energy subsidies. The proposal was made to […]

Phase-out of wind production tax credit could help secure its extension

Amid the lame-duck rush to conclude the 112th Congress, the proposed extension of the 10-year wind energy production tax credit, or PTC, is one of the two big energy issues President Obama has to juggle as he prepares for his second term and tries to keep the U.S. economy from falling off the ‘fiscal cliff’. […]

10 reasons to create a carbon tax

The possible revival of serious talks about a U.S. carbon tax should take thought-leaders to the most recent credible analysis in a book finished earlier this year by Shi-Ling Hsu,  a professor at the University of British Columbia: The Case for a Carbon Tax. Here I cut to the chase to spotlight the 10 reasons […]

U.S. carbon tax talk on the rebound: enough for both parties to dislike . . . and pass?

It might only apply to industry emissions and nary a Republican would dare admit to seriously considering it, but talk of a possible carbon tax is making the rounds in political Washington and elsewhere. Think about it. A carbon tax does not lack for support among mainstream energy and fiscal policy experts; it has drawn […]

How overturning conventional energy wisdom could resurrect real progress in climate talks

Ever since the Copenhagen round of global climate talks failed in 2009, there have been no shortage of prescriptions and declarations about what needs to change. The subsequent failures in Cancun in 2010 and Durban last year underscore the need for a new way of thinking. There is no denying the world  needs, and is […]

FAST FIX: These residents in the Southeast and Midwest U.S. DO want to combat climate change

Large majorities of African Americans in Arkansas, Indiana, Missouri and South Carolina believe that everyone — including governments and individuals – can do something to reduce the impact of climate change. This according to research by the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies: “Consistent with African Americans nationally, black adults in the four states […]

It’s about time: GOP House leader Boehner signals willingness to cut oil, coal subsidies

EDITORIAL The move by U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner to thrust $3.6 billion in annual tax breaks benefiting producers of fossil fuels represents a possible sea-change in the nation’s energy priorities. Boehner’s comments in an interview on ABC News Monday night could reduce the huge gap between subsidies for oil, coal and natural […]