Eban Goodstein

Eban Goodstein is the director of the Bard Center for Environmental Policy and Bard's new MBA in Sustainability in NYC. In recent years, Goodstein has coordinated educational events at over 2,500 colleges, universities, high schools, and other institutions across the country. Goodstein is the author of a college textbook, Economics and the Environment, (John Wiley and Sons: 2007), as well as The Trade-off Myth: Fact and Fiction about Jobs and the Environment. (Island Press: 1999). His most recent book is Fighting for Love in the Century of Extinction: How Passion and Politics Can Stop Global Warming (University Press of New England: 2007).

Skating on thin ice

Costs of inaction: the price of ice

Click for a larger version.Image: NASAArctic sea ice extent averaged over Januray 2011 its lowest recorded levels since satellite records began in 1979. It was 19,300 square miles below the record low of 5.25 million square miles, set in 2006, and 490,000 square miles below the 1979 to 2000 average. Climate change, the crisis many hoped we could ignore for decades, is here. Ice and snow that covered the vast frozen northland for 800,000 years is disappearing rapidly. As countless square miles of the Arctic turn from reflective white to heat-absorbing dark, the result is an acceleration of global warming. And …

bummer, man

Costs of inaction: the economics of high-end warming

Perhaps nowhere is the contrast between the science and economics of climate change as great as in the dueling metaphors governing the impact of high-end warming: “collapse” (following scientist Jared Diamond) vs. “reductions in the rate of growth” (following all standard integrated assessment models in economics, including those of Nicholas Stern and the IPCC). By way of reference, mid-range estimates of business-as-usual warming are currently around 7.2 degrees F. During the last Ice Age, global temperatures were only 8.1 degrees F colder then they are today. Many climate scientists, I would argue, believe that high-end warming (greater than 7.2 degrees …

ace up your sleeve

New year, new idea for climate: the American Clean Energy party

Last year, the U.S. failed to act on climate, and the victory of dozens of Tea Party Republicans in November eliminated any prospect for serious action for at least the next three years. Barring future technological or political miracles, we have now blown by the chance we had to stabilize the planet at 450 parts ppm of CO2. Yet it is not "too late" for action. How can we build a powerful clean energy majority in Washington, a stronger majority than the one that didn't get the job done in 2010?