Adam Fischer, Author at State of the Planet

The Policy Buffet (Part 5): How the Oil Spill Killed the Climate Bill — and Why the Economy Didn’t Help, Either

The climate bill has come and gone. Just two months ago, it seemed as though the bill stood a fighting chance, given the buffet of options available to policymakers.

by |August 20, 2010

The Policy Buffet (Part 4): Eulogizing the Climate Bill that Wasn’t

On July 22, just days before the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) declared that the last decade was the warmest on record, the United States Senate abandoned its effort to put a price on carbon. Comprehensive climate and energy legislation was on life-support for weeks until Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev) announced that… read more

by |August 18, 2010

Climate and the Border: Why Rising Temperatures Will Add Immigration Challenges

When experts warn of the consequences of global climate change, they usually cite impacts on natural systems. They tell us that ice caps will melt, sea levels will rise, extreme weather will become more common, droughts will increase in frequency, oceans will become more acidic and so on. In recent years, we have also come… read more

by |August 12, 2010

Beyond Carbon: How Fixing the Ozone Layer Contributes to Climate Change

The greenhouse effect is not all about carbon dioxide. Several other substances, such as water vapor and methane, also play a key part in trapping radiation. Recently, a family of relatively obscure chemicals called hydrofluorocarbons, or HFCs, has entered the spotlight due to its role in global warming. HFCs are highly potent greenhouse warmers –… read more

by |August 10, 2010

Climate Change and the PR Problem

On Friday, July 9, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), sent a letter to the individuals who will contribute to the group’s Fifth Assessment Report. Part of the memo instructed researchers how to interact with the media, largely in response to growing criticism of the IPCC’s process and reporting…. read more

by |August 3, 2010

The Policy Buffet (Part 3): As Kerry-Lieberman Fades, a Fresh Start for Cap-and-Trade?

This is the third post in a series that covers the Senates current energy and climate proposals. The introductory post can be found here. The American Power Act (APA), co-sponsored by Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass) and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn), has been seen by many as a paradigm for comprehensive energy and climate legislation. The bill… read more

by |July 12, 2010

The Policy Buffet (Part 2): Understanding the American Power Act

This is the second post in a series that covers the Senate’s current energy and climate proposals. The introductory post can be found here. Among the various climate and energy proposals floating through the Senate, the American Power Act (APA) has received the lion’s share of attention. The bill, co-sponsored by Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass) and… read more

by |July 6, 2010

The Policy Buffet (Part 1): Making Sense of the Senate’s Climate and Energy Proposals

Advocates for energy policy reform and legislative action on climate change have long anticipated their opportunity to effect change. This summer may be the turning point they have awaited. In recent weeks, energy and climate policy have taken over the political limelight. The devastating oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico has forced Americans to… read more

by |June 21, 2010

When High Hopes Make Little Sense: Why the Hartwell Paper Fails to Deliver

Earlier this year, 14 energy academics, analysts and advocates gathered with hopes of reinventing the way the international community treats climate policy. The result, The Hartwell Paper: A new direction for climate policy after the crash of 2009, aims to examine “all aspects of the crisis which enveloped global climate policy” last December during the… read more

by |June 16, 2010