Common Tragedies

Thoughts on Environmental Economics

In which Seinfeld meets environmental policy

Posted by Evan Herrnstadt on January 6, 2009

Robert Stavins on green jobs:

“Let’s say I want to have a dinner party. It’s important that I cook dinner, and I’d also like to take a shower before the guests arrive. You might think, Well, it would be really efficient for me to cook dinner in the shower. But it turns out that if I try that I’m not going to get very clean and it’s not going to be a very good dinner. And that is an illustration of the fact that it is not always best to try to address two challenges with what in the policy world we call a single-policy instrument.”

New rule: if an idea is analogous to something Kramer did, you shouldn’t base policy on that idea.

H/T: Environmental Capital via EnvEcon.

Update: Maybe we could get out of this recession if we take all our bottles to Michigan.

2 Responses to “In which Seinfeld meets environmental policy”

  1. Josh Blonz said

    What if we install a disposal?

  2. Will Duggan said

    Well Mr. Stavin’s comments pretty well nail the definition of specious. It is twisted logic to try to decouple a clean energy economy, rebuilding America’s colapsing infrastructure and solutions to truly scary unemployment and dropout rates. Who would Mr. Savin rather have doing the work of making this country more energy efficient,innovative and secure? Virtually every economic development official in every American city hopes they see steps taken to bring about climate prosperity which, by definition, must be broadly shared.

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