News & CommentaryArchive
Nov 11, 2009
Big Climate Impact for Little Climate Dollars
My essay, co-authored with Dean Karlan of Yale and Innovations for Poverty Action, was a runner-up in the Alliance Magazine/Environmental Funders Network climate change essay contest. The contest asked, “As a philanthropist, how would you spend $10 million to combat global warming?“ Dean and I argue that for substantially less than $10 million you can have a big impact on climate change by using the tools of behavioral economics to help individuals conserve energy. Specifically the widespread deployment of real-time use meters and commitment contracts can help people who want to save energy meet their goals—and it requires very little external funding.