Archive for the ‘Publications’ category

By Nadra Rahman and Jessica Wentz Federal climate regulations are currently under attack, in part due to the perception that these regulations will impose excessive costs on regulated industries and society as a whole. But according to federal projections, the benefits of these regulations would significantly outweigh the costs. In a new paper, we added […]

By Peter Ross For decades, federal energy and water efficiency standards have demonstrably saved consumers money, reduced pollution, and increased grid reliability.  The U.S. Department of Energy (“DOE”) periodically reviews standards and test procedures for more than 60 products, representing about 90% of home energy use, 60% of commercial building energy use, and 30% of […]

by Justin Gundlach A new working paper from the Sabin Center adds to discussions currently swirling around the prospect of a federal carbon tax. The paper–part of a larger project underway at the Columbia University Center for Global Energy Policy–shines light on a set of practical considerations that other analyses have ignored, namely how existing […]

by Justin Gundlach What is green infrastructure (GI) and why does New York City need more of it? Green roofs, bioswales, and porous pavers are all examples of GI (see images at right), which one article defines as “a network of approaches and technologies that mimic, maintain, or restore natural hydological features in the urban […]

The Harvard Environmental Law Review has published an article by Michael Burger and Jessica Wentz, “Downstream and Upstream Greenhouse Gas Emissions: The Proper Scope of NEPA Review.” Recently, legal controversies have arisen regarding the scope of greenhouse gas emissions that should be considered in environmental reviews of fossil fuel extraction and transportation proposals under the […]

by Romany Webb and Justin Gundlach There has been much talk in recent weeks about pricing carbon to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Earlier this month, a group of former Republican cabinet members proposed adoption of a nationwide carbon price, starting at $40 per ton. That seems unlikely, however. Even the proposal’s main architect, former Secretary […]

The Sabin Center has just published a new survey examining how federal agencies have been implementing the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ)’s guidance on climate change and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) reviews. The survey, which was conducted by a team of Columbia undergraduate students as their capstone project for the Sustainable Development program, reviews […]

Forced Migration After Paris COP21: Evaluating the “Climate Change Displacement Coordination Facility” By Phillip Dane Warren, Columbia Law Student and Former Sabin Center Intern Climate change represents, perhaps, the greatest challenge of the twenty-first century. As temperatures and sea levels rise, governments around the world will face massive and unprecedented human displacement that international law […]

Today, the Sabin Center published a new working paper discussing the possibility of federal and/or state regulation to increase fuel octane levels. Many readers may be wondering: what is octane? And why do we want to increase it? In simple terms, octane is a measure of a fuel’s ability to withstand compression in a vehicle […]

The Sabin Center has just published a new working paper by Susan Biniaz, the lead climate change lawyer for the U.S. Department of State since 1989 – I Beg to Differ: Taking Account of National Circumstances under the Paris Agreement, the ICAO Market-Based Measure, and the Montreal Protocol’s HFC Amendment. The following excerpt introduces the […]

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