Yale Journal on Regulation, Forthcoming
This article explores the legal and economic considerations for updating discount rates and details the compelling economic evidence for lowering the current default rates for regulatory analyses. It argues that a declining discount rate framework can consistently harmonize agency practices and so put agencies on sound legal footing in their approach to valuing the future.
This report finds that EPA has authority under Section 111(b) of the Clean Air Act to set nationwide performance standards for new residential and commercial fossil-fuel appliances and that multiple means of reducing emissions from such appliances are adequately demonstrated, including the use of electric-heat-pump technology.
Published in Administrative Law Review
The Trump Administration construed the major questions doctrine enormously expansively and inconsistently, in ways untethered to the Court’s jurisprudence, turning it into little more than an invitation for courts to strike down regulations the Administration did not favor for policy-based reasons. Under the similarly wrongheaded and even broader arguments made by the Administration’s allies, all greenhouse gas regulations could be suspect on major question grounds. Bringing to light these argument's enormously problematic application of the doctrine is important to foreclose their successful revival in future administrations.
Be Wary of Unidentified Connections
To ensure policies are based on accurate predictions of climate impacts, it is critical to understand social-ecological system (SES) feedbacks, including how humans change the climate by reacting to a changing climate. Building on recent scholarly work on the topic, this article describes SES interactions and how they can be incorporated into climate policy tools such as the social cost of carbon. The article then proposes a research agenda for the identification, quantification, and integration of climate-society feedbacks into social-cost integrated assessment models (SC-IAMs).
The social cost of greenhouse gases provides the best available method to quantify and monetize incremental climate damages. To date, however, the use of the method for such determinations and processes has been sporadic and fairly limited. Forthcoming in the Yale Journal on Regulation, this article evaluates the various legal, economic, and institutional controversies surrounding the social cost of greenhouse gases, and explains why this metric should play a critical role in guiding agency policymaking and decision-making related to climate change.
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