Institute for Policy Integrity

Twitter @policyintegrity

What We Do

Project Updates

  • Public Comments

    Comments on Reconsideration of NHTSA Rule to Update Civil Penalties

    October 10, 2017

    In December 2016, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) finalized a rule that updates civil penalties for car manufacturers that violate fuel economy standards. NHTSA is now reconsidering the rule, claiming it would have a significant negative economic impact. The agency provides no evidence that economic circumstances have changed since the rule’s finalization to make the rule more costly. Our comments argue that the agency should not proceed with the proposed reconsideration, because it inadequately explained why it changed positions. If the agency does continue with the reconsideration, both the Inflation Adjustment Act and economic cost-benefit analysis would justify an update to the penalties rates rather than maintaining the original penalty rate from 1975.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments on the Reconsideration of the Mid-Term CAFE Standards

    October 10, 2017

    In August, Environmental Protection Agency and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced their intentions to reconsider greenhouse gas and fuel economy standards for light-duty vehicles for model years 2022-2025. Our comments show that the employment effects from the standards are likely to be small, and we provide details on the short comings and biases of industry analyses that purport to show large employment effects. In contrast, the comments explain that the standards will help reduce numerous externalities, resulting in large welfare gains for consumers and the creation of valuable environmental benefits.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments to EPA on the Clean Water Rule

    October 9, 2017

    In our recent comments on the attempted repeal of EPA’s Clean Water Rule, we show how the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers obscured the value of wetlands protection in their proposal to repeal the rule.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments to Interior’s Royalty Policy Committee

    October 9, 2017

    On behalf of Policy Integrity, Policy Director Jayni Hein recently delivered a statement at the Department of Interior’s Royalty Policy Committee public meeting on October 4, 2017. Her statement included recommendations on how Interior can achieve “fair market value” for taxpayers for the use and development of federal resources, as well as how Interior can fulfil its “multiple use” mandate.

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  • Public Comments

    Public Comments on Regulatory Review (CFTC, CPSC, Department of Education, PBGC, USDA)

    October 4, 2017

    Many federal agencies are requesting the public’s suggestions for rules to repeal or reform, tacitly implying that most regulations stifle economic growth. In comments to several agencies, we argue that regulatory review should consider the public benefits of regulation, not just the costs to regulated industries, and should prioritize review of rules for which actual costs and benefits diverge significantly from predicted costs and benefits.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments on Hydraulic Fracturing Rule Rescission

    September 25, 2017

    In proposing to rescind its two-year-old rule for managing hydraulic fracturing operations on federal and tribal lands, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) fails to explain why the rescission’s estimated cost savings to industry justify the forgone benefits, such as environmental protection and increased worker safety. Our comments to BLM on the proposed rescission discuss the agency’s inadequate cost-benefit analysis, which does not sufficiently explain why changed circumstances in the past two years have altered the rule’s cost-benefit justification.

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  • Public Comments

    Joint Comments on Fuel Economy Standards and the Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases

    September 25, 2017

    Vehicle fuel economy standards set by the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) help reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the United States by making cars more fuel efficient. Our comments on the reconsideration argue that NHTSA should value the social cost of those emissions as robustly as possible, as they have done in the past. We encourage NHTSA to consider the social cost of greenhouse gases in both the rule’s Environmental Impact Statement and Regulatory Impact Analysis, and that it should use estimates considering global damages of climate change using a three percent or lower discount rate.

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  • News

    Response to a Critique of New York State’s Clean Energy Programs

    September 20, 2017

    A recent report criticizing New York’s Clean Energy Standard (“CES”) incorrectly argues that the CO2-reduction benefits from these programs are non-existent. The report claims that the benefits of reducing CO2 emissions with the CES, which are valued using the Social Cost of Carbon (“SCC”), are “effectively zero.” This conclusion and the preceding assertions are incorrect and inconsistent with basic economics. Our response highlights the flaws of the report and explains that New York’s CES in fact generates significant and crucial environmental benefits.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments on Delay of Department of Labor’s Fiduciary Rule

    September 15, 2017

    The Department of Labor’s Fiduciary Rule requires investment advisors to serve the best interests of their retiree clients. In August 2017, Labor proposed to stay the rule’s enforcement provisions. In our comments on the proposed delay, we argue that the delay violates basic administrative law principles.

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  • News

    Court Rules Against Bureau of Land Management’s Inadequate Consideration of Climate Effects

    September 15, 2017

    On September 15, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit ruled that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) violated the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) by providing an inadequate analysis of the likely climate impacts from four coal leases. This ruling, as argued in our press release on the case, establishes an important judicial precedent. Agencies cannot make unsupported assumptions about climate effects while still complying with NEPA and the Administrative Procedure Act.

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