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Articles by Robert Stavins

Robert N. Stavins is the Albert Pratt Professor of Business and Government, Director of the Harvard Environmental Economics Program, and Chairman of the Environment and Natural Resources Faculty Group at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government.

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  • Federal climate policy should preempt state and regional initiatives

    In just a few days, Sens. John Kerry, Lindsey Graham, and Joe Lieberman will release their much-anticipated proposal for comprehensive climate and energy legislation — the best remaining shot at forging a bipartisan consensus on this issue in 2010. Their proposal has many strengths, but there’s an issue brewing that could undermine its effectiveness and […]

  • Who killed cap-and-trade?

    In a recent article in the New York Times, John Broder asks “Why did cap-and-trade die?” and responds that “it was done in by the weak economy, the Wall Street meltdown, determined industry opposition and its own complexity.” Mr. Broder’s analysis is concise and insightful, and I recommend it to readers. But I think there’s […]

  • What’s the proper role of individuals and institutions in addressing climate change?

    This may seem like a trivial question with an obvious answer. But what really is the proper role for individuals and institutions in addressing climate change? An immediate and natural response may be that everyone should do their part. Let’s see what that really means. Decisions affecting carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, for example, are made […]

  • Any hope for meaningful U.S. climate policy? A somewhat positive view

    The current conventional wisdom ­– broadly echoed by the news media and the blogosphere – is that comprehensive, economy-wide CO2 cap-and-trade legislation is dead in the current U.S. Congress, and perhaps for the next several years. Watch out for conventional wisdoms! They inevitably appear to be the collective judgment of numerous well-informed observers and sources, […]