Blindness of Experts and the Need for Democracy: Credentialed authorities are comically bad at predicting the future. But reliable forecasting is possible.

When an outcome took them by surprise, broad-minded specialists were much more likely to adjust their ideas. The best forecasters view their own ideas as hypotheses in need of testing. If they make a bet and lose, they embrace the logic of a loss just as they would the reinforcement of a win. This is called, in a word, learning.   …

Short book highlights from Concrete Economics, a New Consensus recommendation

Central to Hamilton’s view was protecting America’s infant industries, so up went the tariff, about 25% in 1816  Given the huge costs of shipping in the early 1800s, this was a formidable exercise in protectionism as well as a major source of federal government revenues.  And up it stayed, over the opposition of agriculturalists who were buyers, not producers, of …

3 key traits of good climate policy, tackling the problems we have and making a large, meaningful impact on carbon emissions and climate change

Good climate policy has 3 key traits: It has a large, meaningful impact on carbon emissions and climate change. It specifically tackles the problems that aren’t already being tackled by the market. It actually gets passed into law. All of that is compatible with a Green New Deal.  In just the past decade, solar power has gone from being uneconomical anywhere on …

Practical and cost-effective ways to reach renewable energy goals in Colorado

From EnergyFreedomCO.org Many Colorado cities have ambitious energy goals but no practical and cost-effective way to reach them. Over one million Coloradans live in cities with the goal of obtaining 100% of their electricity from renewable energy sources. Many large companies also have aggressive renewable energy goals. This paper reviews six possible solutions that would allow cities and large companies …

Progressive tax policies Democrats need

ANNIE LOWREY, The Atlantic, Feb 5, 2018 https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/02/here-are-progressive-tax-policies-democrats-need/581830/ Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wants to raise the top marginal income-tax rate to 70 percent; for every dollar a person earns over $10 million, Ocasio-Cortez suggests, he should be left with 30 cents. Senator Bernie Sanders, a likely 2020 candidate, wants to expand the estate tax. And Senator Elizabeth Warren, a definite 2020 candidate, …

Recruiting jobs to your state in the rapidly expanding energy storage sector

Energy Storage Is The Job Creation Opportunity Of The Future — Now! #CleanTechnica Exclusive, Carolyn Fortuna, Clean Technica, Dec 13, 2018 So often we hear naysayers bemoaning the effects of relinquishing a fossil fuel-based energy economy. “If we stopped producing oil and gas tomorrow, we’d have an economic crisis. We’d have a famine. We’d have a world war.” So it’s refreshing to …

Clothing from Ag fibers + Urban Gardening 101: How to Deal With Contaminated Soil

By Brian Barth, Modern Farmer, on EcoWatch Urban soils are particularly prone to contamination. Fifty years ago, your yard could have belonged to a farmer, who, perhaps not knowing any better, disposed of old bottles of anti-freeze or contaminated diesel in a hole out behind the tractor garage. Or perhaps the remains of a fallen down outbuilding, long ago coated …

Weather is now a primary consideration when designing and implementing cities’ technologies.

  Smart Cities Dive, Feb 2018 When temperatures dip, tech advisers frequently offer users tips for keeping devices functioning properly — not to mention Apple’s suggestion that iPhones are meant to operate at temperatures above 32 degrees. Cold weather can weaken the integrity of device materials and cause them to shatter more easily, but more commonly addressed problems are unresponsiveness, shortened battery life …

Panel stolen from solar highway that was intended to provide electricity, melt snow, and be able to charge cars

LA Times Jan 2018 China’s heralded ‘solar highway’ closed after thieves stole one of the panels China’s solar energy-collecting highway in Jinan, which opened in December, was forced to close after thieves stole or damaged some of the solar panels. (Getty Images) Jonathan Kaiman It was supposed to be China’s grand “photovoltaic highway” — a solar energy-collecting, 0.6-mile stretch of road …