Tag Archives: energy efficiency

Why Would Google Pay $3.2 Billion for Nest?

(This blog is co-authored by Howard Chong) Google’s acquisition of Nest Labs Inc. is puzzling. It’s nice that Nest is about reinventing previously “unloved things” like thermostats and smoke detectors. But is it really worth $3.2 billion? To put it … Continue reading

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Cap-and-Trade Throws a Wrench into the Gears of Green Consumerism

Last week, Severin posted a great piece on household electricity consumption. Armed with a simple metering device and your energy bill, you can easily measure how your various household appliances affect your energy consumption and your pocketbook. Understanding the link … Continue reading

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Would a Nest Help My Family Save Energy?

Since my husband and I both work in the energy industry, we often exchange energy-themed gifts. He has given me energy books (my favorite was American Power by Mitch Epstein filled with beautiful art-shots of power plants), power plant trading … Continue reading

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Learning by using

Rob Stavins (Harvard) and Richard Newell (Duke) put together a most excellent workshop, which brought together one possible all-star team of energy economists to discuss the energy efficiency gap (the wedge between the cost-minimizing level of energy efficiency investment and … Continue reading

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How California’s K-12 Schools Can Teach Us About Energy Efficiency

California has long been a leading indicator of national energy-efficiency trends. The state passed minimum efficiency standards for refrigerators in 1976, 11 years before the federal government adopted similar standards. And, the recent Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards are based … Continue reading

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20/20 Vision

A new EI@Haas Working Paper by Koichiro Ito offers a fresh look at California’s well-known 20/20 program.  The paper is available here.  During the summer of 2005, California households could receive a 20% discount on their electricity bills if they … Continue reading

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Sunk Costs and Driving Decisions?

Do people who buy more expensive vehicles drive more? At first, the answer to that question seems obvious. Within a certain income group, people who are going to spend a lot of time in their cars are willing to invest … Continue reading

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Ex Post Evaluation of the Empire State Building Retrofit

The Empire State Building is the tallest and most well-known building in the United States to have received LEED certification. The certification was part of a massive retrofit undertaken between 2009 and 2011. Engineering models predicted that the retrofit would reduce … Continue reading

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Solar panels (and energy efficiency) at the White House

Last week, the Washington Post reported that solar panels are being installed on the White House roof. Or, more accurately, re-installed.  Jimmy Carter installed a solar thermal system on this roof back in 1979. This was quickly removed by the next … Continue reading

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Deconstructing the Rosenfeld Curve

The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and, most recently, the Sacramento Bee have pieces on Arik Levinson’s new NBER working paper, “California Energy Efficiency: Lessons for the Rest of the World, or Not?”   The paper makes a nice point, but I worry that … Continue reading

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