Resources Article

Goings On: Highlights from Recent Events at RFF

May 13, 2015

Clockwise from top: David Cash (right) with RFF President Phil Sharp; Mario Molina; Michael Schellenberger; Jeremy Schreifels; Holger A. Kray; and Trigg Talley (right) with RFF University Fellow William Pizer

Assessing State Goals and Challenges under EPA’s Clean Power Plan
“[An emissions trading program] keeps bureaucrats like me from [deciding] the most cost-effective thing to do [and] which technologies to choose. It sends the right kind of signals to the market to figure out how to reduce emissions. This regulation has essentially been open season for innovation, and that’s how it should be viewed.”

- David Cash, Commissioner, Department of Environmental Protection, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, on concerns about using an emissions trading program under Section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act. October 14, 2014.

Making Nature Useless? Global Resource Trends, Innovation, and Implications for Conservation
“More people living in cities, rather than spread all over the countryside, allows for more of our landscapes to return to nature and make habitats for non-human animals and species. This has been a real tidal shift in the environmental movement of the last 40 years.”

- Michael Schellenberger, President, The Breakthrough Institute, on the key drivers of decoupling conservation from consumption. November 5, 2014.

Nobel Laureate Mario Molina on Understanding Climate Risk
“You cannot tell that any one event—like Hurricane Sandy or a particular flood—was caused by climate change. But that’s the wrong answer to the wrong question. What seems to be clear is that the intensity of a good fraction of these events has indeed been affected by climate change, and that comes from measurements.”

- Nobel Laureate Mario Molina, Director of the Mario Molina Center for Energy and Environment in Mexico City, on the effect of climate change on extreme weather events. November 12, 2014.

Carbon Cap and Trade in China: From Experimentation to Nationalization?
“These pilot [programs] are just one component of a larger policy package, both for climate and air quality. [It includes] energy saving targets, coal caps, economic restructuring, the emissions trading pilots, air quality goals, and renewable energy targets. It’s important
not just to evaluate these policies in isolation but also to look at how they interact with one another.”

- Jeremy Schreifels, Senior Policy Analyst, US Environmental Protection Agency, on understanding the relationships among China’s climate policies. December 3, 2014.

How Will Climate Change Affect Our Global Food Supply?
“In the past five years [at the World Bank], there hasn’t been a single conversation with senior government leaders where the threat of climate change is not the main topic. Be it last week in Nicaragua, the week before in Jamaica, before Christmas in Serbia—there’s no agricultural operation going to the board at this point in time that is not climate-informed.”

- Holger A. Kray, Lead Agriculture Economist, Agriculture Global Practice, World Bank Group, on the integration of climate change concerns into the World Bank’s ongoing work. January 28, 2015.

Toward a Global Climate Agreement: Comparing Countries’ Levels of Effort
“We’re seeking a durable agreement in 2015 that can serve as the architecture for commitments, not just in the immediate 2020 period, but for successive commitments in the years beyond. This would mean we would be able to focus on what specific actions countries take, rather than revisiting the balance of the architecture every time we come back to the table.”

- Trigg Talley, Deputy Special Envoy for Climate Change, US Department of State, on the ideal design of an international climate agreement. February 4, 2015.