In the News

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Climate change calls for science, not hope

The New York Times • June 23, 2015 • Eduardo Porter

"...Michael Greenstone, who runs the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago and was one of the authors of the energy efficiency study, puts that in practical terms. “There is a limited appetite to devote resources to mitigating carbon emissions, so we should aim to pursue the least expensive ones,” he said. “There is a risk that we do a bunch of policies that make us feel better about ourselves but do not hit the climate target directly.”..."

Home efficiency upgrades fall short, don’t pay: Study

AP • June 23, 2015 • Jonathan Fahey

"...The study, which used data from a random sample of 30,000 low-income Michigan households that were eligible for an Energy Department home weatherization program, found that the projected energy savings were 2.5 times greater than actual savings. As a result, energy bills didn't decline nearly enough to eventually pay for the initial cost of the upgrades. "The problem is that the real world is screwy," said Michael Greenstone, an energy economist and head of the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago. "The models project much larger savings than are realized by homeowners."..."

Ten headwinds coming at retirees

The Seattle Times • June 23, 2015 • Jon Talton

"...Second, these were the older boomers, the ones who got drugs, sex and rock ‘n’ roll when they were young and pensions during their working lives. It’s certainly not true of much of my g-g-generation. Indeed, baby boomers were the first to be experimented on with 401(k)s, inferior retirement plans but useful in siphoning income upwards. Now comes the Hamilton Project with a report on 10 challenges of what we might call the new face of retirement in America. Hint: It likely won’t pay for a secure life in Sun City..."

Senate joins House in effort to deny DOL fiduciary funding

Investment News • June 23, 2015 • Mark Schoeff Jr.

"...In a speech at an event sponsored by the Hamilton Project at Brookings, Mr. Perez said that finalizing the rule in the remaining 577 days of the Obama administration was “at or near the top of the list of the things we need to do to strengthen the middle class.” In talking to reporters, Mr. Perez added: “We're making real progress toward producing a final rule that will be … a win for consumers, a win for [advisory] businesses that want a level playing field and a win for retirees.”..."

Labor secretary: ‘Stakes could not be higher’ in retirement rule fight

Washington Examiner • June 23, 2015 • Joseph Lawler

"Speaking at an event at hosted by the Hamilton Project in Washington, Perez took on industry objections to the rule his agency has proposed to make retirement investment plan brokers legally bound to act in their clients' best interest. Perez also made the issue personal, citing the example of a couple who he said were steered into a high-fee annuities by a bank investment broker who received kickbacks for doing so..."

Study: $9.60 minimum wage may be about right for RI • June 23, 2015 • Ted Nesi

"...In a recent policy memo for The Hamilton Project, a center-left think tank based at Washington’s Brookings Institution, Dube offered two proposals for how Rhode Island policymakers could decide on a higher minimum wage. “These state and local reforms can be an important part of the policy portfolio for reducing the incidence of poverty and for helping low-income families support themselves as they strive toward the middle class,” he argues..."

Exchanges—they’re not just for health insurance

Insurance News Net • June 23, 2015 • Linda Koco

"...The insurance exchange idea is spreading beyond the health insurance exchanges set up under the Affordable Care Act (ACA)...A potential long-term care (LTC) exchange: The Hamilton Project at Brookings has proposed a LTC exchange as one of several LTC reforms the researchers envision..."

A new study looks at federal energy-efficiency efforts—and the results are grim

Vox • June 23, 2015 • Brad Plumer

"...That's the issue explored in a new working paper by Meredith Fowlie, Michael Greenstone, and Catherine Wolfram. The economists conducted a large randomized controlled trial of 30,000 homes in Michigan involving the federal Weatherization Assistance Program, which helps low-income families replace their furnaces, upgrade insulation, and seal up leaks along doors and windows. This experimental set-up allowed for a more rigorous evaluation of these weatherization efforts..."

Africa’s moment to lead on climate

The Washington Post • June 19, 2015 • Kofi Annan and Robert E. Rubin

"Climate change is the greatest threat facing humanity today. To avoid catastrophe, we must dramatically reduce the carbon intensity of our modern energy systems, which have set us on a collision course with our planetary boundaries. This is the challenge leading up to three key international events this year: a July summit on financing for new global development goals, another in September to settle on those goals and — crucially — a global meeting in December to frame an agreement, and set meaningful targets, on climate change..."

The Path to Water Innovation: Part 2 of 2

Modern Pumping Today • June 18, 2015

Modern Pumping Today featured the full Hamilton Project discussion paper "The Pate to Water Innovation," by Newsha K. Ajami, Barton H. Thompson Jr., and David G. Victor of the Stanford Woods Insittute for the Environment. 

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Hamilton Project Updates

A periodic newsletter of events, policy briefs, and working papers from The Hamilton Project.