Energy and Environment

Featured

RAND energy and environmental analyses examine the implications of existing and proposed energy policies on the environment. Building on a long history of policy research, RAND helps balance the need for environmental protections and economic development.

  • Senior Policy Researcher Benjamin Preston, photo by Diane Baldwin/RAND Corporation

    Q&A

    The Science of Climate Policy: Q&A with Benjamin Preston

    Oct 22, 2019

    Benjamin Preston, a senior policy researcher and director of RAND's Community Health and Environmental Policy Program, specializes in climate risk and adaptation, disaster recovery, and resilience. In this Q&A, he discusses common misperceptions about climate change and how to decarbonize the U.S. economy.

  • An elderly couple leaves an evacuation center as a wildfire forces the center itself to be evacuated, Poway, California, October 21, 2007, photo by Mike Blake/Reuters

    Commentary

    Turning Off Power to Combat Wildfires Could Harm the Very People Who Need Protection

    Oct 28, 2019

    Intentionally shutting off power may be a practical way to prevent power lines from sparking wildfires. But is it worth the risks? Until more thoughtful and comprehensive decisions are made, planned power outages need to be planned better.

Explore Energy and Environment

  • Report

    Impact of ammonia emissions from agriculture on biodiversity: An evidence synthesis

    Ammonia emissions in the UK have been rising since 2013, with the main source being agriculture. The impacts on biodiversity are significant and together with the costs to human health could be equivalent to over £700m per year in the UK by 2020.

    Sep 16, 2018

  • A house burns as firefighters battle a fast-moving wildfire that destroyed homes driven by strong wind and high temperatures forcing thousands of residents to evacuate in Goleta, California, July 7, 2018

    Journal Article

    How Wildfire Risks Impact California's Homeowners Insurance Market

    Wildfire poses considerable risk to Californians, and the associated increases in home insurance prices can cause financial hardship for families. It's critical to understand how the insurance market is performing with regard to wildfire risk and how climate change may affect this performance.

    Sep 5, 2018

  • A composite picture of the Shell Oil cracker plant along the Ohio River at the site of a former zinc smelting company about 20 miles from downtown Pittsburgh, July 2, 2018

    Essay

    Appalachia Partnership Helps Both Workers and Employers in a Changing Market

    An innovative program in Appalachia is realigning the skills of the workforce with the needs of employers, getting people back on the job and providing a 21st-century model of workforce development.

    Aug 30, 2018

  • Bird scooters outside a restaurant in Santa Monica, California, July 23, 2018

    Commentary

    A Better Way to Think About Scooters

    Unleashed in Santa Monica, California, last September, Bird and its competitors are now in 30 American cities and counting. Cities are responding to the scooter takeover with new regulations and increased law enforcement. But if officials rely only on 20th-century tools to integrate these 21st-century scooters into their cities, they will miss a big opportunity.

    Aug 28, 2018

  • Ducklings and a swan gather on a sandbank in the Jamaica Bay neighborhood of New York City

    Report

    Building Resilience in an Urban Coastal Environment

    What are the potential effects of climate change and sea level rise on flood risk, ecosystems, and water quality in New York City's Jamaica Bay? How can flood risk be reduced while also improving water quality, restoring habitat, and improving resilience to extreme weather events?

    Jul 31, 2018

  • Eco-friendly law and eco balance concept

    Commentary

    Suggestions to Help EPA Successfully Implement Retrospective Reviews

    The EPA's interest in including a systematic retrospective review element in new regulation has the potential to provide a transparent and well-structured method for assessing which decisions worked well and which didn't. If successful, it could serve as a role model for other regulatory agencies.

    Jul 19, 2018

  • Journal Article

    Fugitive Chemicals and Environmental Justice: A Model for Environmental Monitoring Following Climate-Related Disasters

    Waterfront communities can use this six-step framework to proactively develop an environmental monitoring program to prepare for, recover from, and respond to chemical leaks after weather disasters.

    Jul 3, 2018

  • Periodical

    RAND Review: July-August 2018

    This issue spotlights RAND's Gun Policy in America initiative and RAND's evaluation of Housing for Health, a Los Angeles County program that has moved some of its most chronically homeless and vulnerable residents into permanent housing.

    Jul 2, 2018

  • Wetlands in the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, with houses in the background.

    Journal Article

    Computational Modeling of the Jamaica Bay System

    For Jamaica Bay, and other coastal areas being studied for resilience capacity, we need not only models that are published and in the public domain, but mechanisms to generate scenarios that address resilience from various perspectives.

    Jun 28, 2018

  • Turkish and Israeli flags fly atop the Turkish embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel, June 26, 2016

    Report

    Israeli-Turkish Ties Face Formidable Challenges

    Israel and Turkey have mutual economic interests, such as trade, tourism, and energy. The two countries have usually been able to separate these interests from their political differences, but current relations remain contentious. Israel and Turkey differ on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the future of Syria.

    Jun 27, 2018

  • The Federal Emergency Management Agency Headquarters in Washington, U.S., October 5, 2016

    Commentary

    FEMA's Transformation

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency's strategic plan shows several shifts in U.S. disaster relief policy. Redirecting longer-term recovery operations to state and local authorities would allow FEMA to concentrate its assets on the catastrophic disasters it is uniquely designed to handle.

    Jun 8, 2018

  • Aerial view of Miami, Florida

    Report

    Adapting to a Changing Climate in Southeast Florida

    Florida's Miami-Dade and Broward counties are vulnerable to flooding and intrusion of saltwater into drinking water. These risks are driven by sea level rise, changes in precipitation, and urban development. How can the region adapt?

    Jun 6, 2018

  • Woman communicates with telemedicine doctor by digital tablet

    Journal Article

    Direct-to-Consumer Telemedicine Following Natural Disasters

    Direct-to-consumer telemedicine is a viable way to deliver medical care in the days after a natural disaster. But most people who use such services do so for routine matters, not disaster-caused illnesses.

    Jun 4, 2018

  • Ofo cycles lined up and ready for use at a railway station, Cambridge, UK, April 26, 2018

    Commentary

    Dockless Bikes Present Challenges, but Experience Shows They Can Work

    By encouraging more people to cycle, bike-sharing platforms could provide many potential benefits through reduced congestion, reduced air pollution, and health benefits. But there are also challenges, including pressures on existing cycling infrastructure and the potential for theft and vandalism.

    May 31, 2018

  • "Global connections" 3D rendering

    Report

    Discontinuities and Distractions: Rethinking Security for the Year 2040

    As part of its Security 2040 initiative, RAND convened a workshop of experts to discuss trends that could shape the world through the year 2040.

    Apr 27, 2018

  • News Release

    Direct-to-Consumer Telemedicine Can Deliver Routine Care to Affected People Following Natural Disasters

    Direct-to-consumer telemedicine is a viable way to deliver medical care in the days following a natural disaster, although most people who use such services do so for routine matters rather than disaster-caused illnesses.

    Apr 25, 2018

  • A man selling air coolers rests at a market on a hot summer day in Ahmedabad, India May 4, 2017

    Commentary

    Staying Cool as the Globe Warms

    Studies suggest that the heat of the future will exceed humans' capacity to cope. But taking advantage of smart technology, inexpensive traditional methods of cooling that require little energy use, and innovative energy-efficient technologies could provide a sustainable path forward in heat-challenged regions.

    Apr 23, 2018

  • The Eiffel tower is illuminated in green with the words "Paris Agreement Is Done" to celebrate the Paris U.N. COP21 Climate Change agreement in Paris, France, November 4, 2016

    Report

    U.S. Policy in Asia Under the Trump Administration

    A conference on U.S. policy in Asia explored the arenas of U.S.-Asia engagement, developed an understanding of the outcomes of past interaction, and made the case for the terms of future engagement. Topics included climate change, trade and investment, national security, human rights, and macroeconomic issues.

    Apr 18, 2018

  • A view of Earth from outer space

    Report

    Is Climate Restoration an Appropriate Policy Goal?

    Climate restoration seeks to return atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases to preindustrial levels within one to two generations. Is this a suitable goal for humanity's response to climate change?

    Apr 6, 2018

  • Journal Article

    Quantifying the Influence of Agricultural Fires in Northwest India on Urban Air Pollution in Delhi, India

    The modeling approach presented in this paper can be used to infer not just the co-variability of urban pollution and upwind fires, but also the percent contribution of smoke to the already intense urban surface particulate matter in Delhi.

    Apr 5, 2018