The Surprising Upside of Sustainable Investing

Sustainable investing can generate a larger return but not for the ethical reasons most of us would expect.

Connecting a Good Economy to Bad Health

It makes sense to assume that when the economy is better, we feel better, We should have less illness and live longer. Correspondingly, in a sick economy, we too feel sicker. Not necessarily. A Recession’s Mortality Impact One study of European…

New York’s Bag Fee Fight

The arguments for and against plastic bag fees have created a heated debate about the environment, jobs, shopping and revenue.

Weekly Roundup: From Raisins to BBQ

Our everyday economics includes property rights, sovereign debt, default,, externalities, regulation, Pigovian taxes, incentive, state taxes, and oligopoly.

Could You Like a Carbon Tax?

Our Wednesday environment focus Here is my “To Do” list for reducing carbon emissions: Buy a Prius. Install solar panels. Take the train to NYC. Lower my thermostat to 60 degrees during the winter. Raise my AC thermostat to 78 during…

A Pollution Tale With 2 Happy Endings

Sometimes green incentives can have unintended consequences. Our story begins in an airport. About to board a flight, an environmentally concerned individual purchases “carbon offsets.”  Yes, that flight will pollute the air but the offset could be used to fund…

Sometimes Flying Costs More Than Money

What to do when you’ve paid extra for an aisle seat and a person asks you to switch with his wife so that they can sit next to each other? Do you say yes or endure his irritation through the…

The “Problem” of the Commons

Located 30 miles from Cape Cod, Massachusetts, the island of Nantucket has no traffic lights. Instead, drivers respond to stop signs, rotaries and courtesy. More often than not, if a walker or a biker needs to cross the street, cars stop. When…

Environmental “Nudges”

Sometimes a nudge is not enough. According to science writer Jonah Lehrer, society has to do more than “nudge” us when it wants to change our behavior. When Sacramento, California wanted to diminish energy usage by showing customers what their…

Environmental Dilemmas

The environment or employment? Smart meters: Environmentally superior, they automatically transmit data about electricity usage. As a result, we can better manage our demand for energy. The tradeoff? Even including smart meter R & D, IT services, manufacture and installation,…