November 16th, 2018

Regression test: must environmental taxes hit the poorest?

by Peter Jones   Political enthusiasm for environmental taxes seems to be at a low ebb in the UK. In the run up to Budget 2018, there was indications that things might change, but talk of a new tax on plastics turned into a consultation, while taxes on incineration and single-use cups were mooted and […]

October 29th, 2018

Budget breakdown: what would a green chancellor have done?

by Dominic Hogg   Economists know that if markets fail to reflect the damages caused by pollution, or to reflect the benefits provided ‘for free’ by nature, then decisions regarding consumption and investment will be misguided. Think of this in terms of having a finite number of chips to allocate across different activities to make […]

August 24th, 2018

How is New Zealand making people and nature as important as GDP?

by Ben Martin   “Life is about more than just money.” It’s almost a cliché. But that quote isn’t from a left-wing think tank or a green non-governmental organization. In fact, it comes straight from official documents of the Treasury of New Zealand. When even famously conservative government economists are saying there’s more to life […]

May 18th, 2018

Infrastructure: can less be more?

by Leidy Klotz   If her book sales are any indication, you or someone you know have probably used Marie Kondo’s “KonMari™” method for tidying up your home. Sure, Kondo’s approach, found in her wildly successful The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, has some space-saving sock-folding tips, but the real tidying benefits come only if you […]

May 4th, 2018

From rags to riches? Second hand clothing restrictions in East Africa

by Harriet Parke   On a recent trip to Kenya, my interest was caught by the ‘mitumba’ (Swahili for ‘second-hand clothing’) stalls. You find them clustered in the vivid, bustling and dust-filled markets at the centre of each town, and even dotted along residential streets. There was a strange dissonance between the unfamiliar surroundings and […]

May 26th, 2017

Will ‘natural capital’ ever yield returns?

by David Baxter   Natural capital is pushed as a new way of looking at environmental impacts and the value of nature to society. Promoters of the concept, and the associated approaches of valuing natural assets in financial terms, promise that it will put the protection of nature on to boardroom agendas. It is even […]

November 18th, 2016

Marking the new balanced scorecard for public procurement

by Alex Forrest   The UK public sector procures a huge amount of goods, services and capital items. HM Treasury’s latest estimate of gross current procurement was £213 billion, whilst gross capital procurement was £55 billion. Eunomia recently highlighted the potentially enormous gains to be made if this substantial sum – 15% of GDP – […]