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.


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 […]

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: Getting the Price Right: The Case for Carbon Taxation

Charging American businesses and individuals a price to emit carbon dioxide (CO2) is essential to reduce U.S. emissions quickly enough to prevent atmospheric concentrations of CO2 from reaching an irreversible tipping point. It’s a bedrock economic principle that prices of goods and services should reflect ("internalize" as the economists say) all of the societal costs […]
Recent storms have uprooted hundreds of mature trees on New Jersey's "River Road." Photo: Charles Komanoff

Extreme Weather Wreaks Havoc on Palisades Bike Mecca

Work crews will soon start clearing dozens of downed trees from Henry Hudson Drive, the New Jersey road whose spectacular vistas and challenging hills have made it a prime destination for New York-area cyclists. If all goes well, it may re-open as early as next month. But the scale of the devastation along the eight-mile […]