Economics

It complicates the process of completing my PhD dissertation, but there has been highly encouraging movement from administrations targeted by fossil fuel divestment campaigns. While McGill has again said no, Concordia and UBC have pledged to go beyond their prior partial commitments and entirely divest from fossil fuels: Concordia University Foundation to divest and aim […]

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Ontario Auditor General Bonnie Lysysk’s 2019 report says that the Ontario government’s proposed climate policies are insufficient to meet their (inadequate) target for reducing greenhouse gas pollution: The province estimates that its new approach will still meet federal reduction targets of 30 per cent below 2005 emission levels, or the equivalent of 17.6 megatonnes by […]

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A few weeks ago The Economist ran this cover and two stories on Saudi Aramco, climate change, and the future of the global oil industry: They claim: “Aramco’s underlying strategy is to be the last oilman standing if the industry shrinks, pointing to the upheavals to come”. I wrote recently about the non sequiturs often […]

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Carbon taxes have begun to play a strange role in debates on climate change politics. Designed to appeal to conservatives they are now a focus of rage on the political right. At the same time, they are supported by some big fossil fuel companies who see them as a comparatively small cost and a potential […]

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Geoff Dembicki has a piece out about how Trudeau’s method is to promise substantive reforms to voters, while privately comforting business with the understanding they won’t really be meaningful: So on climate, for instance, he was presented as this kind of river-paddling environmental Adonis. He promised that fossil fuel projects wouldn’t go ahead without the […]

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I hadn’t heard about this weird distortion in the US medical system, where pharmaceutical companies use tax-exempt charities to manipulate the co-payment system used by health insurers for prescription drugs: Half of America’s 20 largest charities are affiliated with pharmaceutical companies. … Pharmaceutical companies will often claim that helping patients with their co-payments is a […]

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It seems like a plausible rule for climate change reduction schemes that the people running them will generally prioritize other political and economic objectives over actual emission reductions. This meshes together with other forms of wishful thinking, where we give ourselves credit for overly generous assumptions about reduced emissions, then find every possible way to […]

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Surprisingly, despite the importance placed on it in the University of Toronto fossil fuel divestment brief and in the divestment movement generally, I don’t have a post on the idea of the carbon bubble. If we start with the temperature targets countries have chosen as the upper limit for tolerable climate change, we can calculate […]

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The National Trust – described by the BBC as “the biggest conservation charity in Europe” – has 4% of its £1bn stock market investment in fossil fuel corporations, but will now divest those holdings over 3-12 months.

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