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  • Study calls federal flood insurance program harmful as lawmakers ponder its future

    April 21, 2010 – ClimateWire

    The cost of federal flood insurance, including the program’s $20 billion deficit, is “likely dwarfed” by its harmful impacts on natural areas vulnerable to construction, according to a new report. The program, launched 42 years ago as a financial safeguard for threatened homes, is clashing with adaptation policies being prepared for the impacts of climate change, cautions the paper by the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University’s School of Law.

  • FEMA Flood Insurance Program Primarily Benefits The Wealthy: Study

    April 21, 2010 – Huffington Post

    A policy research group study has found that the National Flood Insurance Program, a division of FEMA, primarily benefits wealthy homeowners who build in high-risk coastal areas at the expense of U.S. taxpayers. According to the Institute for Policy Integrity’s analysis, “Flooding the Market”, the flood insurance program’s subsidies help wealthy Americans with large beachfront properties or vacation homes in a typical year, and low-income individuals only during severe catastrophes.

  • ‘Social cost’ of tailpipe and other CO2 emissions should be higher

    April 2, 2010 – ClimateWire

    Michael Livermore…with New York University, said the government’s social cost of carbon analysis is not perfect. He would like to see a higher price per ton, and more consideration given to potential catastrophic risk. (Requires subscription.)

  • Livermore on OMB and cost-benefit analysis

    March 24, 2010 – The New Republic’s The Vine

    Earlier this week, several environmental groups fired off a letter to the Obama administration condemning the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Their complaint? The green groups believed that OMB was incorrectly devaluing the cost savings that would come from a new EPA rule on vehicle fuel efficiency. Many greens were outraged. And if OMB was doing what it was accused of doing, it would be a real outrage. Except that, as it turns out, OMB was doing no such thing.

  • Jason Schwartz on Carbon Cutting Stateside

    March 10, 2010 – Planetshed Blog

    Under President Bush, not much happened at the federal level when it came to climate change. During that bleak time, environmentalists could at least look to the states for a glimmer of progress. States in several regions organized carbon cutting initiatives and proposed some moderate but important greenhouse gas reductions. These local, largely market-based programs could jump-start America’s climate efforts and prove to the nation that cap-and-trade is not a dirty word.

  • Is it a problem that more industry groups are meeting with key regulatory officials than enviros?

    March 8, 2010 – Grist

    A quick scan of OIRA’s public meeting records shows that, since President Obama took office, industry and trade associations have held many more meetings with OIRA than advocacy NGOs or unions-something like eight times as many. If OIRA were turning down greens in favor of business interests, this would be a major cause for concern. But, according to the folks in that office, they take every meeting requested to discuss regulations under review. That means the reason for the lopsided meeting log is a lack of requests from groups working for stronger protections.

  • Retaking Rationality featured in analysis of Obama’s improvements to regulatory agencies

    February 18, 2010 – The New Republic

    As Richard L. Revesz and Michael A. Livermore argue in a recent book, Retaking Rationality, there is nothing intrinsically illiberal about cost-benefit analysis. Indeed, it can be quite consistent with a progressive faith in social science.

  • Michael Livermore with an update on President Bush’s midnight regulations

    February 4, 2010 – Grist

    In the months leading up to President Obama’s inauguration, the Bush administration rushed through a raft of controversial regulations. These “midnight regulations,” like the one that would allow mining waste to be dumped into rivers and streams in West Virginia, caused a major stir at the time—but whatever happened to them? After a year in office, has the new president been able to clean up his predecessor’s last minute mess? The answer is a mixed bag of attempts, delays, successes, and road blocks.

  • Make the kids pay: The economic effects of climate change on future generations

    November 18, 2009 – Grist

    The debate over the economics of climate change boils down to that very calculation: how much are we willing to pay today to avoid climate risks in the future? The simple fact is that as we continue to use fuels that contribute to global warming today, we place major economic burdens on our kids and grandkids tomorrow.

  • What the CBO Isn’t Telling Congress: Climate Change Threatens Million of Jobs

    November 6, 2009 – Huffington Post

    In a survey of 144 top climate economists released November 4, 2009 by the Institute for Policy Integrity at the New York University School of Law, 84% agreed that “the environmental effects of greenhouse gas emissions, as described by leading scientific experts, create significant risks to important sectors of the United States and global economies.” A majority stated that sectors that will be negatively affected include agriculture, fishing, forestry, insurance, and health services.