Wilson Center Experts

Barry Rabe

Public Policy Fellow
Canada Institute

Expertise:
Energy
;
Environment
;
Governance
;
U.S. Politics
;
North America
Affiliation:
J. Ira and Nicki Harris Family Professor of Public Policy, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan
Wilson Center Project(s):
“The Political Feasibility and Policy Durability of Pricing Carbon”
Term:
Jul 06, 2015
-
Dec 30, 2015

Barry Rabe is the J. Ira and Nicki Harris Family Professor at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan.  He also holds an Arthur F. Thurnau Professor in Environmental Policy at Michigan, where he directs the Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy (CLOSUP).  Rabe is a non-resident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a fellow of the U.S. National Academy of Public Administration.  He co-directs the National Surveys on Energy and Environment, a twice-annual survey of American public views on climate change and related energy issues.  He received his PhD in political science from the University of Chicago and was the first social scientist to receive a Climate Protection Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Project Summary

Carbon pricing through either taxation or emissions trading has won wide support from a diverse set of economists.  However, this policy approach has proven difficult to adopt in many national and sub-national settings and many early efforts have collapsed.  This project will examine the factors that have enabled some governments to establish carbon pricing mechanisms and sustain them over time, placing particular emphasis on the role of alternative revenue uses to build constituency support.  The project will primarily focus on North American experience but also include findings from Europe and Asia.  It will also consider lessons from other areas of energy taxation, such as severance taxes applied to shale oil and gas development in the United States.

Major Publications

"The Durability of Cap-and-Trade Policy," Governance (May 2015)

"Taxing Fracking: American Severance Taxation and Revenue Use in the Shale Era," Review of Policy Research (June 2015)

Statehouse and Greenhouse: The Emerging Politics of American Climate Policy (Brookings Institution Press)

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