Barry Rabe: Can We Price Carbon?
Barry Rabe: Can We Price Carbon?
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Barry Rabe discusses his book Can We Price Carbon? Moderated by John Milewski, Director of Digital Programming; Host and Managing Editor, Wilson Center NOW.
About the book:
A political science analysis of the feasibility and sustainability of carbon pricing, drawing from North American, European, and Asian case studies.
Climate change, economists generally agree, is best addressed by putting a price on the carbon content of fossil fuels—by taxing carbon, by cap-and-trade systems, or other methods. But what about the politics of carbon pricing? Do political realities render carbon pricing impracticable? In this book, Barry Rabe offers the first major political science analysis of the feasibility and sustainability of carbon pricing, drawing upon a series of real-world attempts to price carbon over the last two decades in North America, Europe, and Asia.
Rabe asks whether these policies have proven politically viable and, if adopted, whether they survive political shifts and managerial challenges over time. The entire policy life cycle is examined, from adoption through advanced implementation, on a range of pricing policies including not only carbon taxes and cap-and-trade but also such alternative methods as taxing fossil fuel extraction. These case studies, Rabe argues, show that despite the considerable political difficulties, carbon pricing can be both feasible and durable.
About the author:
Barry Rabe is a Professor of Public Policy in the Ford School and also holds appointments in the School of Natural Resources and Environment and the Program in the Environment. He is a non-resident senior fellow in the Governance Studies Program at the Brookings Institution. Much of his recent research examines state and regional development of policies to reduce greenhouse gases, which has been conducted in collaboration with the Brookings Institution, the Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia, and the Pew Center on Global Climate Change. In 2006, Rabe became the first social scientist to receive a Climate Protection Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in recognition of his contribution to both scholarship and policy making. His 2004 Brookings book, Statehouse and Greenhouse: The Evolving Politics of American Climate Change Policy, received the 2005 Lynton Keith Caldwell Award from the American Political Science Association in recognition of the best book published on environmental politics and policy in the past three years.
Rabe has also written extensively about such topics as nuclear and hazardous waste management, cross-border and cross-media transfer of pollutants in federal regulatory systems, and the conditions necessary to achieve intergovernmental cooperation in the implementation of federal grant and regulatory programs. During the 2008-09 year, he was a visiting professor at the Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia, where he organized the National Conference on Climate Governance and edited a series of subsequent publications. In 2004, he completed a ten-year term as editor of the American Governance and Public Policy book series for Georgetown University Press. At Michigan, he previously served as Director of the Program in the Environment and as Interim Dean of the School of Natural Resources and Environment. In 2007, he received the Daniel Elazar Award for Career Contribution to the Study of Federalism from the American Political Science Association. In 2009, he was named a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration.