New Book Provides Concrete Examples of How to Regain Control and Reliability. Few Americans feel they understand, let alone have any say over, the intricate forces that determine whether their lights go on. In today’s energy system, we have become utterly dependent on distant power plants, long-haul transmission lines, and unaccountable decision-makers. Toregain reliability and peace of mind, according to a new book published by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR), citizens must take charge of their electrons.
Themedia simply report on California’s shortfall of thousands of megawatts and limit the discussion to President Bush’s energy plan and Gov. Gray Davis’ plea for wholesale rate caps. They’re missing the real story. California may need thousands of megawatts of generating capacity in the long run, but the rolling blackouts hit only a few blocks at a time. This summers’ electricity crisis, therefore, isn’t going to be dealt with in Washington or even Sacramento, but at the local and neighborhood level.
Inthe beginning, before there were giant utilities and high voltage transmission lines, and state and federal regulatory agencies and rolling blackouts, companies didn’t sell electricity. They sold power plants. By 1883, the Edison Electric Illuminating Company (later General Electric) had installed 334 power plants inside cotton mills, grain elevators, manufacturing plants, newspapers and theaters.
Sometimes doing the right thing is almost too simple. Requiring publicly funded construction projects to produce no net increase in greenhouse gas emissions is one example: it’s hard to find the down side. By David Morris… Read More
Thisspeech by David Morris was originally presented at a conference of the Environmental Grantmakers Association 1998 Retreat in Houston, Texas, on October 28, 1998. Letme begin with what I hope is a relatively uncontroversial proposition. Rules Matter. Some of you may have a visceral reaction to the word"rules", for it conjures up notions of meddling and government bureaucracies. But the reality is that human societies always have and always will make rules that channel scientific genius, and investment capital and entrepreneurial energy in certain directions. We make the rules, and to a large extent, the rules make us.… Read More
TheEconomic Efficiency and Pollution Reduction Act of 1998 completely eliminates school district’s general education property tax levy and finances it at the state level through a tax on pollution.… Read More
This 1994 report by David Morris was originally presented at the Environmental Taxes Workshop, sponsored by ME3, ILSR, and Friends of the Earth on July 6, 1994. This report looked at the the status of Eco-taxes in the United States and Europe.… Read More