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The importance of pricing

Maybe things would be different if somebody had 'invented' prices. We tend not to understand and appreciate institutions, like prices, that emerge spontaneously through human interaction rather than are the product of human design. Because we do not appreciate how they work, it is too easy to miss how they can improve things in areas where they haven’t traditionally been used. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Newsroom
16 July, 2019
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The curse of getting what you wish for

Parables, biblical or otherwise, are excellent instruction. They warn of the dangers of getting what you wish for. Local Government New Zealand might wish to take heed.Midas had regrets.The 1001 Arabian Nights tells of the blind beggar of Baghdad. In that story, a dervish had a magic cream that, if anointed on one eye, would reveal hidden treasures – but would give only blindness if applied to both eyes. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
12 July, 2019
MB OH

Discussing New Zealand's 100% renewable energy policy

As we wait for the release of the Interim Climate Change Committee's (ICCC) report on the 100% renewable energy policy, the Initiative's Matt Burgess and Oliver Hartwich explain why a Government decision to abandon the policy and take a different approach will be a win for the environment and a win for Kiwi households - and that is something to be congratulated. Read more

7 June, 2019
Windmill new

The power of quantifying emissions policies

It has been four weeks since the Interim Climate Change Committee (ICCC) delivered to Minister James Shaw its analysis of the government’s 100% renewable electricity policy. If reports from a conference presentation given by the committee’s chair in April are correct, the results are not kind to the government’s commitment. The ICCC’s analysis seems to suggest the policy will substantially increase the retail price of electricity – by 14% for households and by 39% for industry. Read more

Matt Burgess
Insights Newsletter
31 May, 2019
fish netting

Ecosytem protection from the bottom up

Professor Gary Libecap is something of a god in economics. In a prior life, I would tell my undergraduate students about the pantheon of the Econ Gods. Libecap’s work in environmental economics easily put him in the pantheon. It has also made him Distinguished Professor of Corporate Environmental Management and Distinguished Professor of Economics at UCSB. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Newsroom
20 May, 2019
Water tap2

Valuing the priceless

New Zealand’s freshwater management is in need of a refresh. The kinds of systems that work for allocating and managing water when water is abundant are not the systems that work when water becomes increasingly scarce. And increasing pressure on our aquifers and rivers has made water increasingly scarce in places like Canterbury. The problem is well-recognised. We have had decades of reports telling us of the looming problems, not only in water abstraction (taking water from the aquifers and... Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
10 May, 2019

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