Charles Komanoff: The Real Energy Crisis and the Way Out

The onrushing climate crisis is overturning decades of conventional wisdom on energy. Our problem isn’t that oil and other fuels are too expensive: it’s that they’re not expensive enough.

Streetblog’s own Charles Komanoff, an iconoclastic economist and committed environmental activist, will outline an equitable, progressive approach to solving the climate and energy crises without bankrupting the poor and the middle class.

Charles Komanoff:

  • internationally known energy-economist and transport-economist
  • environmental activist in New York City
  • deconstructed the disastrous economics of nuclear power as author-researcher and expert witness for states and municipalities across the U.S. in the 1970s and 1980s
  • "re-founded" NYC’s bike-advocacy group Transportation Alternatives in the 1980s
  • co-founded pedestrian-rights group Right of Way in the 1990s
  • wrote or edited the landmark reports:
  • co-founder of Greening a Block and co-author of its feasibility study
  • wrote his visionary oil-saving report, Ending the Oil Age after witnessing at close range the traumatic events of 9/11

A math and economics graduate of Harvard, Komanoff lives with his wife and two sons in lower Manhattan.


Climate Idealism Can’t Hold a Candle to Collective Action

Cross-posted from the Carbon Tax Center. Why do Copenhageners ride bicycles? The key reason, says Yale economist and bestselling author Robert J. Shiller, is that Danes are idealists who resolved, after the oil crisis of the 1970s, “to make a personal commitment to ride bicycles rather than drive, out of moral principle, even if that […]

Charles Komanoff’s “Fuel Tax Magic”

New York City economist and activist Charles Komanoff has been focused lately on developing and promoting the idea of a "carbon tax." Carbon taxes are still still very much considered fringe economic theory and politically unviable, though, as you read Komanoff’s latest essay in Grist, you have to wonder how long that will last. The […]

Inebriated Columnist Issues Fatwa Against Kamikaze Jerks

Last week, columnist Steve Dunleavy used his 400-word rant-space in the New York Post to urge the city’s cab riders and motorists to throw open their car doors in front of "pedal punks" riding their "maiming machines," and, "take back the streets" from bike-commuting "kamikaze jerks."  City cyclists, already feeling vulnerable after a month of […]

Carbon Tax vs. Cap and Trade

Congressional debate on climate change has revealed division among politicians on how to best regulate carbon emissions. From NPR’s Marketplace, we get a report on the sharp difference between leading Democrats in both houses, Sen. Barbara Boxer (CA) and Rep. John Dingell (MI) Boxer is quoted as preferring cap and trade, which seems to be […]