Dr. Harrison Fell, ARE professor and environmental economist, was mentioned in an article in the Washington Post on August 11th discussing the Trump administration’s energy policy.
His research article on this topic, which just appeared in Climate Policy, further details his findings. The article states,”the recent change in U.S. presidential administrations has introduced significant uncertainty about both domestic and international policy support for continued reductions in GHG emissions. This brief analysis estimates the potential climate ramifications of changing US leadership, contrasting the Mid-Century Strategy for Deep Decarbonization (MCS) released under the Obama Administration, with campaign statements, early executive actions, and prevailing market conditions to estimate potential emission pathways under the Trump Administration. The analysis highlights areas where GHG reductions are less robust to changing policy conditions, and offers brief recommendations for addressing emissions in the interim. It specifically finds that continued reductions in the electricity sector are less vulnerable to changes in federal policy than those in the built environment and land use sectors. Given the long-lived nature of investments in these latter two sectors, however, opportunities for near-term climate action by willing cities, states, private landowners, and non-profit organizations warrant renewed attention in this time of climate uncertainty. Regardless of actions to scale back climate mitigation efforts, US emissions are likely to be flat in the coming years. Assuming that emissions remain constant under President Trump and that reductions resume afterwards to meet the Obama Administration mid-century targets in 2050, this near-term pause in reductions yields a difference in total emissions equivalent to 0.3–0.6 years of additional global greenhouse gas emissions, depending on the number of terms served by a Trump Administration.”