March 21, 2017
Many measures track some form of business optimism, and generally reveal the same trends. But the RSM Index has a novel twist: a new set of questions that track how that optimism is tied up in expectations that President Donald Trump will be able to change the business environment for U.S. firms.
The surge in business optimism largely owes to hopes that regulations and taxes will decrease, and that the federal government could invest heavily in the nation’s infrastructure. These views have come in for criticism from those wondering if the new administration will be able to execute on all of its goals. But businesses are already building in different expectations about how much will be accomplished in Washington in coming years.
March 17, 2017
"Germany’s greenhouse gas emissions rose last year, according to a new report. CO2 levels rose by 4 million tons in 2016 (0.7 percent), which means Berlin will have to reduce those levels by 40 million tons over the next three years in order to meet the country’s 2020 climate targets. As the FT reports, the country’s opposition Green party (who sponsored the study) is blaming an increase in vehicle miles traveled for the emissions increase . . . The Greens also blamed a pick-up in oil consumption, driven by an expanding economy: German gross domestic product rose 1.9 per cent last year, its fastest pace in five years. They said higher consumption of diesel was also a factor.
Imagine that, Greens inveighing against economic progress. If you need a reminder of how politically toxic and counterproductive environmental dogma can be, look no further than this example."
March 16, 2017
With GDP growth of 2.6% and the overall carbon intensity of the economy (CO2/GDP) declining by about 5.2%, energy-related CO2 declined by 2.7%.
March 16, 2017
Although automakers had agreed to a 50-state standard, Trump’s unexpected victory last year gave them an opening to plead that the 2022-25 rules are unrealistic. During an era of historically low fuel costs, motorists are opting for SUVs and other relatively low-mileage vehicles, which also are the most profitable to produce and sell.
March 15, 2017
As California lawmakers debate the future of the state's battle against global warming, there's one politically sensitive issue they'll have to consider: gas prices. . . drivers could see the price per gallon of gasoline increase by 45 cents. A separate policy, known as the low-carbon fuel standard, is also expected to increase gas prices.