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Columbia Energy Exchange

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Rank #99 in News Commentary category

Business
News
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Columbia Energy Exchange features in-depth conversations with the world’s top energy and climate leaders from government, business, academia and civil society. The program explores today’s most pressing opportunities and challenges across energy sources, financial markets, geopolitics and climate change as well as their implications for both the U.S. and the world.

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Columbia Energy Exchange features in-depth conversations with the world’s top energy and climate leaders from government, business, academia and civil society. The program explores today’s most pressing opportunities and challenges across energy sources, financial markets, geopolitics and climate change as well as their implications for both the U.S. and the world.

iTunes Ratings

136 Ratings
Average Ratings
122
7
4
2
1

Really fantastic

By Dartmouth James - Dec 05 2018
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Hard core, cogent analysis

Good guests and interviews

By rounding3rd - Oct 09 2018
Read more
Is that a pencil on paper always scratching in the background?

iTunes Ratings

136 Ratings
Average Ratings
122
7
4
2
1

Really fantastic

By Dartmouth James - Dec 05 2018
Read more
Hard core, cogent analysis

Good guests and interviews

By rounding3rd - Oct 09 2018
Read more
Is that a pencil on paper always scratching in the background?
Cover image of Columbia Energy Exchange

Columbia Energy Exchange

Latest release on Aug 03, 2020

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Columbia Energy Exchange features in-depth conversations with the world’s top energy and climate leaders from government, business, academia and civil society. The program explores today’s most pressing opportunities and challenges across energy sources, financial markets, geopolitics and climate change as well as their implications for both the U.S. and the world.

Rank #1: Megatrends: What They Mean for Energy Markets

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The world is undergoing remarkable changes in the way energy is supplied, delivered and used, affecting virtually every aspect of our lives. In fact, megatrends are taking shape so quickly that keeping up with them is challenging.   In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless is joined by Barbara Humpton, the CEO of Siemens USA, where she guides the German engineering conglomerate’s strategy and engagement in its largest market in the world. Previously, Barbara was president and CEO of Siemens Government Technologies, and before that an executive with Booz Allen Hamilton and Lockheed Martin.   Bill sat down with Barbara at Siemens offices in Washington to talk about how megatrends, including digitalization, automation and electrification are driving corporate decisions, not to mention the impact of other phenomena like climate change and urbanization. They also talked about the roles of government policy and regulation in addressing these issues, as well as options for making sure there’s an adequate workforce to keep things running smoothly.

Nov 25 2019

37mins

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Rank #2: Shaping the Energy Transition

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Innovation, digitalization and distributed energy solutions are driving major shifts in the energy market, putting power in the hands of the consumer and fundamentally changing their relationship with energy.    On this special edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Iain Conn, Chief Executive of Centrica, a multinational energy and services company supplying electricity and gas to businesses and consumers across the UK, Ireland and North America. Recorded at Innovation Agora at CERAWeek, they discuss the trajectory of the energy transition in relation to thoughtful policymaking and technological transformation.

Iain Conn served as chief executive of BP’s Downstream division from 2007 to 2014, overseeing production and sales for BP’s fuels, lubricants and petrochemicals businesses. Since being appointed CEO of Centrica in January 2015, he has helped the company navigate low oil prices, grow new business sectors and shift toward a more consumer-focused model. Innovation Agora is an open marketplace for the exchange of ideas on energy innovation, emerging technologies and solutions to our energy challenges. It is a part of CERAWeek - an annual event that brings together 4,000 industry leaders and policymakers from more than 75 countries.

Mar 25 2019

39mins

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Rank #3: The Green New Deal: Rhiana Gunn-Wright

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Since its debut last year, the Green New Deal has created quite a stir in Washington. Some have praised it as the most ambitious national project since Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, while others have dismissed it as a green dream. Earlier this week, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) partnered to introduce a preview of this bold new effort to address both economic inequality and climate change. In this episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by one of the architects of the Green New Deal, Rhiana Gunn-Wright. Rhiana is the Policy Director for New Consensus, the progressive policy shop advancing the deal. She breaks down the thinking behind this sweeping plan, which calls for 100% clean energy as well as affordable housing and high-quality healthcare. They discuss the speed, scale and scope of the Green New Deal, and the collective spirit driving the new policy.

Feb 09 2019

32mins

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Rank #4: U.S. Energy, Climate Policy in 2020

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Happy New Year! And welcome back to Columbia Energy Exchange, a weekly podcast from the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University.

The year 2020 promises to be an important one for energy and environmental issues in the U.S., with significant debates in Congress over policy options and a national election in which climate change may be a decisive issue for many voters.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless is joined by Ralph Izzo, a well-known leader in the U.S. utility sector and in the public-policy arena.

Ralph is the Chairman and Chief Executive of Public Service Enterprise Group, a diversified energy company in New Jersey that includes Public Service Electric and Gas Company, the largest investor-owned utility in the state.

He joined the utility in 1992 and has since held several executive positions within PSEG’s family of companies.  

You will often find him testifying before Congress or speaking before groups on some of the most pressing energy and environmental issues of the day.

But what you may not know is Ralph’s career began in science as a researcher at a U.S. Department of Energy laboratory after earning his Ph.D. in applied physics at Columbia University. It’s a professional foundation that’s influenced his business approach for decades.

At Columbia, he also received his bachelor of science and master of science degrees in mechanical engineering, and later went to Rutgers Graduate School of Management for his master of business administration degree.

Host Bill Loveless sat down with Ralph during one of his recent visits to Washington to talk about his increasing concerns over climate change and what he sees as a disparate approach to the crisis when it comes to national and state policies. While he notes that much is being done to reduce emissions in the U.S., including in the electric-power sector, he worries that the advances are likely to fall short of what’s needed to keep temperatures from rising more than 1.5 to 2 degrees Celsius.

Jan 06 2020

36mins

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Rank #5: Chair Kathy Castor: Building Up for Climate Policy

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Climate change, or the climate crisis as many would prefer to call it, has risen to the top of the legislative agenda for the U.S. House of Representatives since Democrats took control of the chamber in January. And laying the groundwork for policy options is the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis established by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to place a high priority on the work. So now, months later, what has this special panel accomplished and how has it navigated this controversial issue?

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks with Representative Kathy Castor, a Florida Democrat who heads the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. Now in her seventh two-year term, Chair Castor represents a district that includes Tampa, a city on Florida’s Gulf Coast that’s at risk of sea-level rise. Before her election to Congress, she was a member of the Hillsborough County Commission and chair of the county’s Environmental Protection Commission.

In the House, she’s also a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, where much of the climate legislation will be assembled once the select committee that she heads completes its work.

Bill caught up with Representative Castor in her office on Capitol Hill to talk about what the select committee has done so far, how it will fulfill its mandate to provide legislative recommendations, and how she sees the politics of climate change playing out in Washington. They also talked about some of the options her panel has considered and what she needs to hear from the public before she submits recommendations early next year.

Oct 28 2019

37mins

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Rank #6: Why This Oil Crash is Different

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The global oil market is in free fall, following the collapse of a meeting last week of OPEC and non-OPEC producers. Saudi Arabia decided to surge its output, sending oil prices tumbling. This historic oil price crash is weighing on stock markets already reeling from the economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Low oil prices raise questions about the future of U.S. shale production, OPEC’s credibility and effectiveness, the geopolitical motivations and the fallout for Saudi Arabia and Russia, the fiscal impacts on key oil-producing countries, the implications for the battle against climate change, and much more.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, Jason Bordoff is joined by three experts who study energy markets, geopolitics, and policy to delve into these complex issues: Helima Croft, Amy Myers Jaffe, and Bob McNally. 

Helima Croft is a Managing Director and the Head of Global Commodity Strategy and Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Research at RBC Capital Markets. She is a CNBC contributor, she started her career at the CIA after earning her PhD from Princeton University. 

Amy Myers Jaffe is the David M. Rubenstein Senior Fellow for Energy and the Environment and Director of the Program on Energy Security and Climate Change at the Council on Foreign Relations. Amy previously served as Executive Director for Energy and Sustainability at the University of California, Davis, as Founding Director of The Energy Forum at Rice University’s Baker Institute, and she is also the Co-Chair of the Center on Global Energy Policy’s Women in Energy Steering Committee. 

Bob McNally is a Non-Resident Fellow at the Center on Global Energy Policy, and Founder and President of The Rapidan Energy Group, a consulting firm based in Washington DC. From 2001 to 2003, Bob served as the top international and domestic energy adviser on the White House staff, holding the posts of Special Assistant to the President on the National Economic Council and, in 2003, Senior Director for International Energy on the staff of the National Security Council. He is also the author of Crude Volatility, a history of oil markets and efforts to manage them, published through the Center on Global Energy Policy’s book series with the Columbia University Press. 

Mar 14 2020

47mins

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Rank #7: Outlook for U.S. Offshore Wind Energy

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U.S. waters off the Atlantic coast are shaping up as a bonanza for offshore wind power, with the federal government having approved 15 tracks of water for development and investment flowing in from overseas. But some say projects may be facing a crosswind as the U.S. government takes a closer look at their impact. In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks with Jeff Grybowski, until recently the co-CEO of Ørsted U.S. Offshore Wind and previously the CEO of Deepwater Wind, the Rhode Island-based company that completed the first offshore wind farm in the U.S., a five-turbine project off Block Island in 2016. Jeff joined Ørsted when the Danish company, a global leader in offshore wind energy, bought Deepwater Wind last year. Jeff shepherded the Block Island project to completion, drawing on his experience not only in business and law but also as a former state policymaker in Rhode Island. Alex Kuffner, a reporter for the Providence Journal, wrote that Jeff, “by proving that an offshore wind farm could be built in the United States, is arguably more responsible than anyone for ushering in the current rush of development.” Likewise, Thomas Brostrom, the CEO of Ørsted U.S. Offshore Wind, told the Journal that Jeff is “one of the pioneers of the offshore wind industry in the U.S.” Bill and Jeff last met two years ago, when the Block Island turbines had been spinning energy for less than a year. Here, they get together again at Jeff's North Kingston, R.I., home to catch up on this emerging industry, the proliferation of projects and the outlook its expansion in the U.S.  They also discuss a controversial decision by the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to take more time to examine the impact of a project called Vineyard Wind, an 84-turbine project planned by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners and Avangrid Renewables that would be the first large-scale wind farm in the U.S. That government inquiry has implications not only for Vineyard Wind but also projects planned by Ørsted and other developers off the Atlantic coast. They touch, too, on the significance of state policies for offshore wind energy as well as federal policies, like a soon-to-expire investment tax credit.

Sep 09 2019

39mins

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Rank #8: New York's Green New Deal

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When it comes to the Green New Deal, Washington is still trying to sort out what the movement means and what steps can be taken to address the dangers posed by climate change. And a similar case is happening in some states, like New York, where Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced a Green New Deal and bold steps he says are necessary to achieve it.

In this episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks to Alicia Barton, the president and CEO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. NYSERDA is a public corporation dedicated to energy innovations that would improve New York’s economy and environment – and an agency that will play a big part in the state’s Green New Deal.

Bill sat down with Alicia outside the Center on Global Energy Policy’s summit in New York recently to talk about the governor’s energy agenda, including its call for an ambitious ramp-up in renewable energy deployments in New York as the state aims for 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2040 and ultimately the elimination of its carbon footprint. It’s not without controversy; some state lawmakers and some interest groups say Cuomo’s Green New Deal doesn’t go far enough. But one way or another, the Empire State seems likely to follow through on a plan of this sort.

Alicia has held public and private sector leadership roles in clean energy for more than a decade, including serving as co-chair of the energy and clean tech practice at the law firm Foley Hoag, chief operations officer of the global utility business unit at SunEdison, and CEO of the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, a publicly supported agency in Massachusetts.

In Massachusetts, she was also the deputy commissioner for policy and planning at the Department of Environmental Protection and the deputy general counsel at the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs.

During their conversation, Bill and Alicia talked about various elements of New York’s Green New Deal, like its ambitious goals for offshore wind power, distributed solar energy and energy storage, and what her agency and the rest of the state’s government, not to mention the private sector, can do to meet them. They also touched on the growing significance of states like New York acting on energy and climate change in the absence of policy in Washington.

Just as important was their discussion of women in energy and the gender imbalance still seen across much of the energy apparatus in the U.S.

May 06 2019

32mins

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Rank #9: How Energy Markets are Influencing Geopolitics and the Global Economy

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Global energy markets are in flux, from the rapid growth in renewable energy production and falling technology costs to talk of peak demand and calls for urgent action on climate change. At the same time, greenhouse gas emissions went up last year at the fastest rate they have since 2011, and we saw growth in coal, oil and gas production and consumption. When it comes to energy and climate issues, there’s tension between the rhetoric, our ambition, and the reality of the facts on the ground. In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Dr. Christof Rühl, an internationally renowned economist specializing in macroeconomics and energy economics. Christof served as Chief Economist at BP for nearly a decade, and most recently, was the Head of Research at the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority.  Jason and Christof discuss how energy markets are impacting geopolitical risk and the global economy -- from sanctions to trade wars and the escalating tensions in the Straits of Hormuz. They discuss the shale revolution, and its global implications as the U.S. becomes a major exporter of both natural gas and crude oil. They also discuss plastics, electric vehicles and new technologies from advanced nuclear to battery storage and hydrogen, and the role they might play in the energy transition.

Jul 22 2019

30mins

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Rank #10: Andy Ott: Reliability of U.S. Power Markets

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Concerns over the reliability and resilience of the U.S. electric grid have heightened over the past year or so, as policymakers, regulators and operators look closer at what it takes to assure adequate supplies of power at the least cost. And the issue is likely to remain one of the top energy priorities in Washington and state capitals in 2019. On this edition of the Columbia Energy Exchange podcast, host Bill Loveless sits down with Andy Ott, the president and CEO of PJM Interconnection, the largest power grid in North America. PJM coordinates the movement of wholesale electricity in all or parts of 13 states in the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest as well as in the District of Columbia. Andy joined PJM 21 years ago and has been responsible for the design and implementation of PJM wholesale power markets. He became CEO in 2015. Bill and Andy got together in Washington, D.C. to talk about PJM, which is attracting close attention, given its size. Their discussion took place just after PJM released a study examining fuel security for the system in coming years and amid efforts in Washington, D.C. and some states to keep old nuclear and coal plants from shutting down. They talked about that study, which included both good news and some warnings, as well as the challenges of accommodating new policies and regulations without disrupting the economic efficiency of the power market. They also looked at wholesale power markets in general and how they have weathered the passage of time since the U.S. government authorized their establishment some 20 years ago. After all, more than half the country is served by such markets. Can they still meet their original objectives of keeping the cost of electricity down while at the same time promoting innovation?

Jan 09 2019

35mins

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Rank #11: BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2019

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For the past 68 years, BP has published its Annual Statistical Review of World Energy, an impressive collection of global energy data that offers a retrospective view of what has happened in the world of energy production, consumption, trade, and related issues.

This week, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Spencer Dale, BP’s Chief Economist. He is responsible for advising BP’s board and executive team, and manages BP’s global economics team, providing economic input into the firm’s commercial decisions.

Jason and Spencer discuss trends, key findings and insights from this year’s report, including the fact that as global energy consumption grew rapidly in 2018, carbon emissions rose at their highest rate in seven years. Jason and Spencer discuss the mismatch between growing calls to act on climate change, growing energy demand, and increasing global carbon emissions. They discuss the unique double-firsts in the U.S. last year, recording the single largest-ever annual increases by any country in both oil and gas production. They discuss how an unusually large number of hot and cold days in the U.S., China and Russia drove strong growth in energy consumption in 2018, and the importance of decarbonizing the power sector to meet our global climate goals. They also discussed BP’s role in fighting climate change.

Jun 17 2019

35mins

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Rank #12: U.S. Natural Gas in a Changing Climate

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The U.S. natural gas industry is enjoying a burst of good fortune lately, with record production, a growing share of electric power markets and exports to other countries. But with increasingly dire reports of climate change, gas, like coal before it, is getting more scrutiny for its carbon and methane emissions.   In this episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless is joined by Karen Harbert, the President and CEO of the American Gas Association. Karen’s new to the job, having joined AGA in April after heading the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Global Energy Institute. Before that, she was an Assistant Secretary for Policy and International affairs at the U.S. Department of Energy under President George W. Bush and a Deputy Assistant Administrator for Latin America and the Caribbean at the U.S. Agency for International Development.   In the private sector, Karen worked to develop infrastructure in countries in the Middle East, Asia and Latin America. Her arrival at AGA comes as the gas industry like other energy sectors vies to establish its role in U.S. energy market amid growing concerns over climate change. Karen and Bill talked about that as well as the Green New Deal, methane, carbon taxes, carbon sequestration and more.

Jun 06 2019

37mins

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Rank #13: Strengthening U.S. Grid Resilience and Security

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Neil Chatterjee, Chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, joins Phil Sharp, a former U.S. representative for the state of Indiana and a member of the advisory board at the Center on Global Energy Policy, on this special edition of the Columbia Energy Exchange podcast, recorded live at the 2019 Columbia Global Energy Summit.

They discuss the technological and market changes that have impacted the regulatory landscape of U.S. energy, the efficiencies of a competitive market, threats to the resilience and security of power-grids, and FERC’s role in addressing the threat of climate change. Chairman Chatterjee was confirmed to the FERC by the Senate in 2017, serving as Chairman from August to December 2017 and from October 2018 to present. Prior to joining, he was energy policy advisor to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY). Before this, he worked as a Principal in Government Relations for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association and as an aide to House Republican Conference Chairwoman Deborah Pryce. He began his career in Washington, D.C. with the House Committee on Ways and Means.

On April 10, the 2019 Columbia Global Energy Summit in New York City hosted top politicians, business leaders, and academics for a variety of lively discussions on what to expect in changes to the oil and gas landscape, the latest research on powering the low-carbon transition, navigating U.S. political fields to advance climate solutions, how to assess risk and build grid resilience, and much more.

Apr 25 2019

32mins

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Rank #14: Fracking, Sustainability & an Unorthodox Quest to Save the Planet

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He’s known as the father of fracking. And while the designation may not be quite right, there’s no doubt that George P. Mitchell set the stage for a revolution in natural gas and oil production in the United States through hydraulic fracturing of shale formations. So, what made this man tick and what lessons might policymakers and industry leaders learn from him today?

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks with Loren Steffy, the author of a new book from Texas A&M University Press called “George P. Mitchell: Fracking, Sustainability, and an Unorthodox Quest to Save the Planet.” Loren is writer-at-large for Texas Monthly and a former business columnist for the Houston Chronicle. Before that, he was the Dallas bureau chief and senior writer for Bloomberg News.

The book is Loren’s latest of three, including one that explored the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

Of the late George P. Mitchell, Loren says, “not since John D. Rockefeller had one single individual in the energy business made a greater public impact.” He tells a story of the son of Greek immigrants who built Mitchell Energy and Development Corporation from a small start-up into a pioneering company that enabled the commercial success of hydraulic fracturing in the U.S.

Bill reached Loren by phone at his home outside Austin, Texas, to discuss this fascinating figure, his contributions to fracking, the financial hardships his company endured to bring them about and the extent to which the government assisted those efforts. They also talked about Mitchell’s strong commitment to sustainable development, which sometimes put him at odds with his peers in the gas and oil industry.

Nov 08 2019

33mins

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Rank #15: What’s Up With Carbon Tax Legislation?

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The introduction of a flurry of bills calling for a carbon tax in the U.S. Congress is breathing some new life into a topic that has long been popular among economists but shunned by politicians.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks with Noah Kaufman, a Research Scholar at the Center on Global Energy Policy and economist specializing in carbon pricing, about this burst of activity on Capitol Hill and its implications for policymaking.

Before joining CGEP in 2018, Noah was a Deputy Associate Director of Energy and Climate Change at the White House Council on Environmental Quality during the Obama administration. He also worked at the World Resources Institute, where he led projects on carbon pricing, the economic impacts of climate policies and long-term decarbonization strategies.

Previously, he was a senior consultant in the environment practice at NERA Economic Consulting.

Noah and Bill discuss elements of the carbon-tax bills introduced by Democrats and even some Republicans in Congress and the circumstances under which they have cropped up now, as well as whether any of them stand a chance of much consideration as the U.S. approaches the 2020 presidential election year.

Noah also breaks down the thinking behind putting a price on carbon emissions, including the level to set it at and distribution of the revenue a carbon tax would raise.

How other climate policies – like incentives for renewable energy – match up with a federal carbon tax also comes up in the conversation, which Noah and Bill carried out by phone from their locations in New York and Washington, respectively.

A handy complement to this discussion is a new online resource from the Center on Global Energy Policy that illustrates what you need to know about a federal carbon tax in the United States.

Aug 05 2019

32mins

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Rank #16: Beyond Carbon: An Inside Look at the $500M Campaign

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With the next U.S. election just 15 months away, advocates of action on climate change are gearing up with fresh plans to address the issue and bring them to the attention of the American electorate. Among the biggest such efforts is the Beyond Carbon campaign launched recently by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the charitable-giving arm of former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks to Carl Pope, the senior climate advisor to Michael Bloomberg who has played a major role in developing the strategy behind the Beyond Carbon campaign. Bloomberg Philanthropies has put $500 million behind the campaign, which it calls the largest ever effort in the U.S. to fight climate change.

Carl is well known in environmental circles, having led Sierra Club for more than 30 years before stepping down in 2010. He is also a founder of the BlueGreen Alliance and has served on the boards of the California League of Conservation Voters and the National Clean Air Coalition. He’s written three books as well, including one in 2017 with Michael Bloomberg called “Climate of Hope: How Cities, Businesses and Citizens Can Save the Planet.”

Bill reached Carl by phone the other day at his office in San Francisco, where he is a Principal Advisor at Inside Straight Strategies.

Among the topics they discuss are the goals of the Beyond Carbon campaign and why Bloomberg and Pope are now targeting natural gas, as well as other fossil fuels, for elimination in order to put the U.S. on a path to a 100% clean-energy economy. 

Bill probes Carl, too, regarding the timing of Beyond Carbon ahead of the 2020 elections, his views on renewable energy and nuclear energy, whether putting a price on carbon makes sense, and how the media is covering climate change.

Of course, with another round of debates for Democratic candidates for president about to take place, Bill also gets Carl's take on their positions on energy and climate issues.

Jul 29 2019

31mins

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Rank #17: Superpower: One Man's Quest to Transform American Energy

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A key initiative at the Center on Global Energy Policy is our Energy Journalism Initiative, which provides aspiring young reporters with a bootcamp to better understand the deeply complex issues of energy and the environment. This initiative is important because when journalism is at its best, the public’s understanding of these deeply complex issues is elevated. Few reporters meet that standard for excellence time and again the way this week’s guest does. 

In this episode of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by the award-winning investigative reporter for energy at The Wall Street Journal, Russell Gold. Some might remember reading his work during the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill in 2010, which was honored with a Gerald Loeb Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His recent work has shed light on the bankruptcy of PG&E, which he calls the “first climate change related bankruptcy in history.” And he wrote the go-to resource for understanding the transformational shale revolution with his first book, The Boom

Russell has now followed that up with Superpower: One Man's Quest to Transform American Energy. It captures the country’s ever-more urgent quest for renewable energy, and it tells the story of one pioneer who tried to make it happen. It takes us beyond renewable generation to the critical but often overlooked part of the grid: transmission. 

Jason and Russell sat down to talk about Superpower, efforts to tie electricity grids together across the panhandle of the United States, and much more.

Jul 08 2019

44mins

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“United We Are Unstoppable”

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Young people around the world are speaking out increasingly about the dangers of climate change and taking actions, too, to reduce the risks of global warming in their lifetimes.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks with Akshat Rathi, the editor of a new book called "United We Are Unstoppable," a collection of essays by 60 young people about their determination to save the world from climate change.

The book is a stirring collection of stories about the impacts of climate change that are already taking place or are likely to do so in the future from activists, many of them from developing countries where the results of global warming often go unnoticed.

Bill and Akshat discuss this new book, the message it sends and its significance at a time when the risks of climate change loom large, especially for generations that will live through it this century.

Based in London, Akshat writes for Bloomberg about people and their ideas for tackling climate change. Previously, he was a senior reporter at Quartz and a science editor at The Conversation. He has also worked for The Economist and the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Akshat has a PhD in organic chemistry from the University of Oxford and a degree in chemical engineering from the Institute of Chemical Technology in Mumbai. He was a 2018 participant in the Columbia Energy Journalism Initiative, a program at the Center on Global Energy Policy that helps energy journalists deepen their understanding of complex topics associated with energy and environmental issues. 

Aug 03 2020

33mins

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Climate Action in the European Union

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Long a leader in progressive climate change legislation, the European Union doubled down on those ambitions this week as it pushed forward a groundbreaking green stimulus package to revive its pandemic-ravaged economies. On July 21, 2020, EU leaders reached agreement, subject to ratification by the European Parliament and national legislatures, on their new green stimulus, a package entitled Next Generation EU. This package will make fighting climate change central to Europe’s recovery, with large sums earmarked for green investments and carbon reduction goals. There remains disagreement about the package and criticism from some member states that are heavily dependent on hydrocarbons, as well as from some environmentalists who say it doesn't go far enough. At the end of last week, the EU parliament approved a non-binding resolution criticizing the deal. On this episode of the Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by someone who has been at the forefront of the EU’s response, Executive Vice President of the European Commission in Charge of the European Green Deal, Frans Timmermans. Frans Timmermans is a Dutch politician and diplomat who has served as First Vice President of the European Commission since 2014. Since December 2019, he has served as the Executive Vice President of the European Commission for the European Green Deal and simultaneously as the European Commissioner for Climate Action. He was previously Minister of Foreign Affairs and State Secretary for Foreign Affairs for the Netherlands. Earlier in his career, he was a member of the Dutch House of Representatives for the Labour Party and a civil servant in the diplomatic service of the Netherlands before becoming active in politics. 

What policies help stimulate economic activity, can be done in a reasonably quick timeframe, and also help address climate change? They discuss what's included in the Next Generation EU package and what the deal might mean for carbon reduction, climate change and economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, both in the EU and around the world. 

Jul 27 2020

48mins

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Energy, Climate Change and Public Lands

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In the last few weeks, we've seen numerous events with implications for how to think about the twin challenges of developing the energy resources we need while also protecting our public lands, curbing climate change, and protecting the environment. There have been setbacks for three major U.S. pipeline projects, all rooted in flaws that courts found in environmental review processes; a new announcement by  President Trump about a “top to bottom overhaul” of the nation’s environmental review process, a cornerstone of the landmark environmental law President Nixon signed half a century ago; and ambitious new plans announced by Vice President Biden to dramatically increase clean energy investments. 

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by David J. Hayes to discuss what all these changes might mean for energy infrastructure projects on federal lands moving forward, along with other issues like what’s next for clean energy and climate policy, how states are responding to the Trump administration’s recent environmental rollbacks, and much more. 

David J. Hayes is an environmental, energy and natural resources lawyer who leads the State Energy and Impact Center at the NYU School of Law, which supports state attorneys general in their advocacy for clean energy, climate and environmental laws and policies. David previously served as the Deputy Secretary at the U.S. Department of the Interior for President Barack Obama and Bill Clinton. He’s also been a visiting lecturer at Stanford Law School, is a member of the board of the Coalition for Green Capital, and is founder of the U.S. Wildlife Trafficking Alliance. Earlier in his career, he worked in private law practice as global chair of the Environment, Land and Resources Department at Latham & Watkins. 

Jul 20 2020

56mins

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2020 Shapes Up as Critical Year for Climate

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To one extent or another, governments around the world are trying to decide how to recover from the economic devastation of the coronavirus pandemic, and that includes measures that might also minimize the risks of climate change. In the U.S., those discussions are increasingly reflecting acknowledgement of racial and environmental justice.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless is joined by Justin Worland, Time magazine’s reporter covering energy, the environment and climate. Justin spoke with Bill as Time is out with a new double issue largely dedicated to climate change.

Justin wrote the cover story headlined “One Last Chance: The Defining Year for the Planet.” He also filed another piece for this edition called “Why the Larger Climate Movement is Finally Embracing the Fight Against Environmental Racism.”

Bill and Justin talk about what makes 2020 so important for addressing climate change. In fact, Justin writes that this year may be the most pivotal yet in the fight against climate change.

In his second piece, Justin recalls a fire at a Philadelphia refinery in 2019 in explaining why environmental racism is getting more attention amid much broader protests over systemic racism in America.

Bill and Justin also touch on coverage of these issues now and in the past, and the challenges the pandemic presents for Justin and other reporters trying to cover events first hand.

Justin joined Time in 2014. He graduated Harvard University with a bachelor’s degree in history.

Jul 13 2020

34mins

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A Democratic Blueprint for Tackling Climate Change

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A new report from Democrats on the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis calls for comprehensive actions by the U.S. Congress to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. as quickly as possible, make communities more resilient to climate change, and build a durable and equitable clean energy economy.

Called “Solving the Climate Crisis: The Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and a Healthy, Resilient and Just America,” the 550-page report contains hundreds of recommendations. Some call it the most far-reaching report on climate change to ever appear on Capitol Hill.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless reached the chair of the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, Rep. Kathy Castor, a Florida Democrat, soon after the report was released by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Castor. It was the second appearance on Columbia Energy Exchange by Rep. Castor, who first sat down with Bill last fall when the committee was still gathering material for the report.

Among the report's specific goals are 100% net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and net negative emissions in the second half of the century. The report would also require a clean energy standard for the electric power sector; a standard to ensure that all light duty vehicles sold by 2035 are zero emission; and similar emission requirements for all new commercial and residential construction by 2030.

It comes after a year of hearings, meetings, research and other actions by the panel to come up with a comprehensive climate strategy. Originally due to be released earlier this year, the report was postponed because of the pandemic.

In their latest discussion, Bill and Rep. Castor talk about the report’s recommendations and the outlook for action on it in Washington at a time when the U.S. is struggling with a pandemic, protests over racial inequality and an economic downturn, not to mention a national election in the fall.

Jul 06 2020

35mins

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New York’s Pathway to Decarbonization

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Ever since Thomas Edison lit up lower Manhattan in 1882, New York has long been at the forefront of many energy and environmental issues, and that remains true today. New York recently adopted groundbreaking targets to decarbonize the state’s electricity, and eventually its entire energy system. This comes on the heels of an innovative set of regulatory initiatives to modernize and decarbonize New York’s electric grid, called Reforming the Energy Vision, led by Richard Kauffman, now an Adjunct Senior Research Scholar at the Center on Global Energy Policy. As the Cuomo administration emerges from the hardest-hit days of the COVID-19 pandemic, questions remain as to how the state plans to achieve these ambitious goals and perhaps show the rest of the nation what a pathway to decarbonization might look like. 

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Ali Zaidi, Chairman of Climate Policy and Finance and Deputy Secretary for Energy and Environment in the Office of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. Ali served as top energy official at the White House Office of Management and Budget during the Obama administration, among other positions. Since leaving the Obama administration, Ali has also worked as a transactional and regulatory attorney, co-founded Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy, and was a Non-Resident Fellow at CGEP.

Jun 29 2020

43mins

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“Power After Carbon”

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As the dangers of climate change become ever more urgent and the costs of renewable energy plummet, the electricity sector has been experiencing wrenching shifts. More intermittent, distributed sources of energy, new technologies, new competitors, new business models, and policy changes. As we drive toward lower and lower carbon sources of energy,  how can the power sector deliver abundant, affordable, secure, flexible power all at the same time? It’s a critical question for the clean energy future, and it also happens to be the subject of a new book by Peter Fox-Penner.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Peter Fox-Penner, who is Founder and Director of Boston University’s Institute of Sustainable Energy, and is a Professor of Practice in the Questrom School of Business. His extensive research and writing interests, in the areas of electric power strategy and regulation, energy and climate policy, and sustainable finance, include the book Smart Power and now its sequel, Power After Carbon. Earlier in his career, Peter was a Principal at The Brattle Group, where he specialized in energy and regulated industry matters. He served as Principal Deputy Secretary at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy unit, and as a Senior Advisor in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. He also currently serves as Chief Strategy Advisor to Energy Impact Partners. Peter received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago. 

Jun 22 2020

51mins

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California Climate Policy: A Conversation with Mary Nichols

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Mary D. Nichols has been called “the most influential environmental regulator of all time.” As chair of the powerful California Air Resources Board, she has pioneered several landmark climate initiatives, including the state’s cap-and-trade program, and worked to set stronger automative emission standards, triggering a pitched battle with the Trump Administration as it seeks to roll back Obama-era fuel economy standards and take away California’s ability to set its own pollution rules.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Chair Mary Nichols, the chair of CARB since 2007, a position she also held from 1979 to 1983. Over a career as an environmental lawyer spanning nearly a half century, Mary Nichols has played a key role in California and the nation’s environmental policymaking. In Mary’s extensive career as an environmental lawyer and policymaker, she founded the LA office of the Natural Resources Defense Council as a senior attorney, served as Executive Director for the Environment Now Foundation, served as the Assistant Administrator of Air and Radiation in the Clinton Environmental Protection Agency, worked in private practice, among many other distinguished roles. Mary is a graduate of Yale Law School and serves on the faculty at the UCLA School of Law.

Jun 15 2020

47mins

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Covid-19 and China’s Energy Outlook

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As China’s reported number of coronavirus cases hovers close to zero and the country begins charting an ambitious economic recovery, one question emerging is how the pandemic affects China’s outlook for energy and climate change. The National People’s Congress, which took place last week following a two-month delay, broke with tradition in not announcing a 2020 growth target for the economy, and likewise, China’s top planning agency, the National Development and Reform Commission, has declined to set an energy intensity reduction target for the year due to ongoing global economic uncertainty. 

The three biggest producers of greenhouse gases - the European Union, the United States, and China - are signaling quite diverging paths about how green a stimulus and clean energy investment plan might be. How is China considering carbon-intensive industry to restore economic growth? How is it thinking about the role of oil and gas, its relationship with the U.S. and its trade deal, and its leadership in the global climate arena? 

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by two Center on Global Energy Policy experts, David Sandalow and Erica Downs, to discuss these questions. 

David Sandalow is the Inaugural Fellow at the Center on Global Energy Policy and co-Director of the Energy and Environment Concentration at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. He directs the Center’s U.S.-China Program and is the author of the Guide to Chinese Climate Policy. Last fall, he was a Distinguished Visiting Professor in the Schwarzman Scholars Program at Tsinghua University in China. David came to Columbia from the U.S. Department of Energy, where he served as Under Secretary of Energy (acting) and Assistant Secretary for Policy & International Affairs. Prior to serving at the Department of Energy, David was a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution. He also served in the White House and as an Assistant Secretary at the U.S. Department of State.

Dr. Erica Downs is a Senior Research Scholar at the Center on Global Energy Policy focusing on Chinese energy markets and geopolitics. Erica previously worked as a senior research scientist in the China Studies division of the CNA Corporation, a senior analyst in the Asia practice at Eurasia Group, a fellow in the John L. Thornton China Center at the Brookings Institution, and an energy analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency. Erica holds a Ph.D and M.A. from Princeton University.

For more on Covid-19 and China's energy outlook, check out a new commentary from CGEP's Kevin Tu, COVID-19 Pandemic’s Impacts on China’s Energy Sector: A Preliminary Analysis.

Jun 08 2020

49mins

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Universal Access To Reliable Energy: How Much Progress Has Been Made?

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Universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy by 2030 has been a goal of the United Nations since 2015. And much progress has been made, as the UN, the World Bank and other international organizations make clear in a new report. But there’s still a long way to go. And the pandemic raging around the world now will only make meeting the goal more difficult.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks with Makhtar Diop, the vice president for infrastructure at the World Bank. He leads the bank’s efforts to develop sustainable solutions and help close the infrastructure gap in developing and emerging economies.

Makhtar discusses the reasons behind the progress that has been made around the world and the impediments keeping the goal of universal access still out of the reach of so many people, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. The latest challenge, he notes, is the pandemic. 

He also explains what the World Bank is doing to alleviate these needs, including new initiatives in the works.

The Tracking SDG-7 Energy Progress Report was released by the UN Statistical Division, the World Bank, the International Energy Agency, the International Renewable Energy Agency and the World Health Organization.

Prior to taking on this current role at the World Bank in 2018, Makhtar was the institution’s vice president for Africa, where he oversaw the delivery of a record-breaking $70 billion to Sub-Saharan Africa to address development challenges, like increasing access to affordable and sustainable energy.

Prior to these and other roles at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, Makhtar started his career in the banking sector and held government positions, including minister of economy and finance in his native Senegal.

He holds degrees in economics from the Universities of Warwick and Nottingham in England.

Jun 01 2020

34mins

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Old Dominion Takes New Stand on Energy

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With the coronavirus wreaking havoc on the U.S. economy, there’s considerable discussion underway about steps that can be taken to get business and consumers back on track. Much of that talk involves energy initiatives that the federal government could undertake. But states have important roles to play, too. Among them is Virginia, which just recently became the first southern state to adopt a 100% clean energy standard.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks with Anthony Artuso, an executive scholar at the University of Virginia’s Center for Economic and Policy Studies, just weeks after Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam signed the new Virginia Clean Economy Act.

Anthony is part of a team at the UVA center working on clean energy modeling and policy analysis in Virginia. He’s also collaborating with a group of faculty and staff at UVA’s Darden Graduate School of Business on economic and sustainability issues, focusing again on clean energy.

In addition to his work at UVA, Anthony is a member of the advisory board of the 100% Clean Energy Collaborative convened by the Clean Energy States Alliance, a nonprofit coalition of public agencies and organizations working together to advance clean energy. Previously, he did research and consulting for U.S. government agencies, state governments, the World Bank and the UN on issues related to clean energy, environmental policy and sustainable development.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental science from Columbia University, a master’s degree from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and a PhD in natural resource policy and management at Cornell University.

Bill reached Anthony at his home in Charlottesville, Virginia. 

May 25 2020

41mins

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Greening Economic Recovery

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The Covid-19 pandemic continues to take a massive toll on the U.S. economy, causing widespread job loss and suffering. Congress and the Federal Reserve have moved quickly to respond with trillions of dollars of support, and the Democratic House last week passed another stimulus bill for a staggering $3 trillion. As governments around the world spend money to support businesses and workers, there is a critically important conversation to be had about how we spend that money and whether it is possible to not just get the economy back on its feet, but build a cleaner economy too and make investments today that will help to advance the clean energy transition. 

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Jason Furman to hear about how the progressive economic policy community thinks about greening economic recovery. From an economic standpoint, what needs to be done to rebuild the economy, what are the criteria for smart stimulus policies, and how might other social objectives like climate change be considered through that lens.  

Jason is Professor of the Practice of Economic Policy at Harvard Kennedy School. He is also nonresident senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. Previously, he served for eight years as a top economic advisor to President Obama, including as his chair of the Council of Economic Advisers. He also worked at the Brookings Institution, where he worked with Jason Bordoff, and was a Director of the Hamilton Project and Senior Fellow. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University. 

May 18 2020

36mins

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Covid-19: The View from India

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Few countries are as important to the outlook for energy demand and climate change as is India. It uses huge amounts of coal, was projected to be one of the biggest drivers of growth in oil use, and has ambitious targets to grow both the use of renewables and natural gas. So how does the Covid-19 pandemic change that outlook - with weeks of strict lockdown measures by India’s 1.3 billion people cratering transportation activity and other energy use? The skies over normally polluted Indian cities turned clear, and more blue. Now with the economy starting to open up, what are the consequences for energy use, for carbon emissions, and for local air pollution? 

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff explores these and other questions with The Honorable Minister Dharmendra Pradhan. Minister Pradhan is India’s Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Minister of Steel. He previously served as the Minister of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship during Prime Minister Modi’s first term. As Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, he has guided decision-making around production, supply distribution and pricing of petroleum, as well as India’s overall energy sector development. 

A transcript of the conversation is available here.

May 11 2020

39mins

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Human Behavior Amid COVID-19, Climate Change

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Today's global pandemic is testing the limits of people’s ability to cope with massive disruption in their lives, including steps they take for the public good. And there may be lessons there regarding our response to climate change.

In this edition of the Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless is joined by Robert H. Frank, a professor of management and economics at Cornell University’s Johnson Graduate School of Management and the author of a new book from Princeton University Press called Under the Influence: Putting Peer Pressure to Work. They discuss human behavior in a crisis, whether it is the COVID-19 pandemic that we are enduring today, or the climate catastrophe that we may be just beginning to experience.

In his book, Robert explains how the strongest predictor of our willingness to support climate friendly policies, install solar panels or buy an electric car is the number of people we know who have already done so. And while climate change may not be uppermost in people’s minds now amid the pandemic, he draws parallels for Bill between our reaction to this health crisis and how we might respond to climate change.

They also talk about another book, one by the journalist David Wallace-Wells called The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming, which Robert says had a big impact on his thinking. David was a guest on Columbia Energy Exchange with Jason Bordoff in September 2019.

In his discussion with Bill, Robert explains his views on the meaning of “behavioral contagion,” its relationship to previous changes in public attitudes about smoking and other controversial issues, and its potential to inspire broad public support for measures to address climate change.

Among his other credentials, Robert is a former economics columnist for the New York Times. His earlier books include The Winner-Take-All-Society, The Economic Naturalist and Success and Luck.

May 04 2020

34mins

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Earth Day at 50: Reflections from Gina McCarthy

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Fifty years ago this week, 20 million Americans came together to march for the planet, demanding action to clean up America’s waterways and air and protect public health. Their efforts launched the first Earth Day and the modern environmental movement. This week on the Columbia Energy Exchange, we reflect back on the U.S. environmental movement in 1970, examine the movement’s successes in reducing pollution, and find lessons for addressing the existential environmental issue of our time -- climate change.

To celebrate this historic milestone, we have a special double episode of Columbia Energy Exchange featuring conversations with two champions of the environmental movement -- one Republican, one Democrat. On Monday, host Jason Bordoff spoke with former Environmental Protection Agency administrator for President George H.W. Bush, Bill Reilly. And today, he speaks with his former Obama Administration colleague, Gina McCarthy. 

Gina served as the 13th administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in President Obama’s second term, after serving as assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation in the first term. Earlier this year, she became president and chief executive officer of the Natural Resources Defense Council, one of America’s most important environmental organizations, founded the same year as the first Earth Day -- 1970. Earlier in her career, she held senior environmental policy roles in the state governments in Massachusetts and Connecticut, serving as commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection, deputy secretary of the Massachusetts Office of Commonwealth Development, and undersecretary of policy for the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. She also spent time after the Obama Administration at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, serving as a professor of the practice of public health in the Department of Environmental Health, and is currently chair of the board of advisors at the Harvard Center for Climate, Health, and the Global Environment (C-CHANGE).

They discuss the current state of the environmental movement, progress made to cut pollution and expand clean energy in the U.S., and the challenges that remain to address the threat of climate change. They also discuss the implications of the Covid-19 pandemic, and how the spread of the virus has highlighted the importance of science and preparedness, and the inequitable burdens of environmental pollution on public health.

Apr 22 2020

49mins

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Earth Day at 50: Reflections from William Reilly

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Fifty years ago this week, one out of every 10 Americans, 20 million in all, came together for a series of rallies, teach-ins, and speeches, to tell their leaders they were no longer willing to put up with choking air and poisoned water. The fiftieth anniversary of Earth Day is an occasion to celebrate the environmental movement’s vast success cleaning up America’s skies and waterways, but also a moment to take stock of lessons learned - for how to address the existential environmental issue of our time: climate change.

To celebrate this historic milestone, the Columbia Energy Exchange will have a special double episode this week with two conversations with two champions of the environmental movement for many years. Both are former U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrators, one Republican and one Democrat, William Reilly and Gina McCarthy. 

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by William Reilly, who has a remarkable career in the environmental movement. On the first Earth Day in 1970, Bill was at the time one of the first employees at the brand new Council on Environmental Quality that had just been created in the White House. He went on to serve as the President of the World Wildlife Fund, and as Administrator of the EPA during the Administration of President George H. W. Bush, leading efforts to pass the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990, and to bring President Bush to the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. He was also appointed by President Obama to co-chair the National Commission on the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, among many other prominent positions in his long and distinguished career. He served in the army to the rank of Captain from 1966-1968, and he graduated from Harvard Law School, and earned his master's degree from Columbia University in urban planning.  

Keep an eye out for host Jason Bordoff's conversation with Gina McCarthy, coming out on Wednesday.

Apr 20 2020

52mins

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Building Coalitions for a Clean Energy Recovery

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Governments around the world are consumed now with the challenge of responding effectively to the coronavirus pandemic, including providing adequate healthcare and alleviating the economic impact of the crisis. But policymakers in Washington and other capitals will eventually need to find ways to stimulate a recovery of their economies to put back to work the legions of people who are now unemployed.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Bill Loveless talks to Ernest Moniz about the role that energy sectors can play in reinvigorating the U.S. economy, especially those sectors responsible for the early stages of a low-carbon transition that’s taken place over the last decade, and the importance of building coalitions to support such options.

Moniz is well known to listeners as a former U.S. secretary of energy during the Obama administration and a key architect of the Paris Agreement on climate change. He also negotiated the Iran nuclear agreement alongside then Secretary of State John Kerry. Now, he is the founder and CEO of the Energy Futures Initiative, a Washington-based clean-energy nonprofit, and co-chair and CEO of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a nonprofit that works to prevent catastrophic attacks and accidents with weapons of mass destruction.

Apr 13 2020

29mins

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The Oil Price Crash and the U.S. Energy Outlook

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One of the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic has been an intentional effort to bring much of the economy to a standstill to slow the spread of the virus. A consequence of that has been an unprecedented drop in global oil demand. Oil prices have fallen about two thirds since the beginning of the year, before rebounding and then falling again on speculation that OPEC and some non OPEC nations might cut production when they meet later this week.

This drop in demand and price impacts the United States, the largest oil producer in the world now, in ways that weren’t true a decade ago - leading President Trump to call on Russia and Saudi Arabia to raise oil prices. 

In this edition of the Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Arjun Murti, Bobby Tudor, and Marianne Kah to discuss the impact of the oil price collapse on the U.S. energy sector, shale oil production in the long run, and what this might mean for the clean energy transition. 

Arjun Murti is Senior Advisor at Warburg Pincus and serves on the board of ConocoPhillips. He previously served as Co-Director of Equity Research for the Americas at Goldman Sachs, and he is a member of the Center on Global Energy Policy’s Advisory Board. Bobby Tudor serves as Co-Head of the advisory business of Perella Weinberg Partners and is Chairman and founder of Tudor, Pickering, Holt & Co. Prior to founding Tudor Capital, he was a partner with Goldman Sachs. Marianne Kah is an Adjunct Senior Research Scholar and Advisory Board member at the Center on Global Energy Policy. She was the Chief Economist of ConocoPhillips for 25 years.

Apr 06 2020

44mins

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Greener Stimulus? Economic Recovery and Climate Policy

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Like most operations, the Columbia Energy Exchange has shifted to be entirely remote, with hosts Jason Bordoff and Bill Loveless continuing to make podcast episodes from home. Given the unprecedented circumstances we are all living through and the uncertainty and questions that follow, Jason and Bill will try whenever possible to bring insights into the energy and climate related aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

To that end, there has been much talk in recent weeks about how to think about using emergency economic relief and stimulus funding from Washington, D.C. to not only address the immediate economic fallout from COVID-19, which has resulted in many parts of the economy being shut down, but also to make progress on some of our more urgent longer-term challenges, mainly, climate change. Climate scientists, environmental groups, certain industries and others have been urging lawmakers to jumpstart the economic recovery through a green stimulus package. Ideas range from clean energy tax credits, to requirements that bailed-out airlines commit to decarbonize, to building green infrastructure, and many more ideas.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Dr. Joe Aldy to gain insight into design of stimulus and how climate policy could factor into it. Joe is a leading environmental economist, currently a Professor of the Practice of Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. His research focuses on climate change policy, energy policy, and more. From 2009 to 2010, he served as the Special Assistant to President Obama for Energy and Environment. It was in that role, and on the presidential transition that preceded it that he was a key White House staffer, that Joe negotiated with Capitol Hill on the Recovery Act that included $90 billion for green goals.

Joe was previously a Fellow at Resources for the Future and served on the staff of the President’s Council of Economic Advisors. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University.

Mar 26 2020

41mins

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India’s Energy Outlook

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India has laid out an ambitious agenda to expand energy access to all its people, reduce air pollution, increase energy security, and reduce carbon emissions intensity. It has made tremendous progress providing access to electricity and clean cooking to its people. It rapidly increased the deployment of renewables even as coal still supplies two thirds of its electricity mix. The country’s oil consumption is expected to grow faster than any other major economy, as are its CO2 emissions. In short, with a population of 1.4 billion people, and rapidly rising energy demand, India will be a key country, perhaps the key country, for energy markets and climate change in the decades to come.

In this edition of Columbia Energy Exchange, host Jason Bordoff is joined by Dr. Ajay Mathur, Director General of The Energy & Resources Institute in New Delhi, to discuss the energy outlook in India. Ajay was in New York City in February to attend a workshop hosted by the Center on Global Energy Policy on engaging state-owned enterprises in climate action, based on a recent report from the Center. 

Ajay is a member of the Prime Minister's Council on Climate Change. He served as Director General of the Bureau of Energy Efficiency in the Indian government from 2006 until 2016, and previously headed the Climate Change Team at the World Bank, as well as the interim Secretariat of the Green Climate Fund. 

Mar 23 2020

38mins

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Really fantastic

By Dartmouth James - Dec 05 2018
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Hard core, cogent analysis

Good guests and interviews

By rounding3rd - Oct 09 2018
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Is that a pencil on paper always scratching in the background?