Jeff Spross

Jeff Spross is a Prospect Summer 2010 intern.

Recent Articles

The TAP Five.

The five TAP pieces that have made a stir around the Web this week. " Falling Out of Love With Obama " " A Nation of Cowards " " Ross Douthat's Fear of Opining " " A Piece of the Dream " " Sherrod's Honesty Is Sorely Lacking In Our National Conversation On Race "

What We Lost Along With the Energy Bill.

Yesterday evening, climate and energy reform died in the Senate. All that remains is a skeletal package that responds to the BP oil spill and provides a few minor incentives for conservation, energy-efficiency retrofits, and the development of natural-gas trucks. Neither an economy-wide cap-and-trade system nor a utilities-only compromise will be part of the legislation Reid plans to introduce. Even more stunning, a renewable-electricity standard , long considered the centerpiece of any compromise excluding cap-and-trade, has also been scrapped. What to make of this? As David Roberts put it , it’s total and complete surrender. It also sounds like deficit politics played a role: Without the revenue-generating capacity of cap-and-trade, Reid had to jettison most everything else to keep the bill’s finances in the black. The blow to the planet’s long-term environmental health should be self-evident, but the extraordinary lack of foresight this turn of events demonstrates on the part of...

The Little Picture: More Oil Spills!

Cleanup of an oil spill in China's port of Dalian has entered its seventh day, after a pipeline exploded on July 16, pouring an estimated 400,000 gallons into the Yellow Sea so far. A researcher from China's Environmental Science Research Institute said the resulting ecological damage could last a decade, and this is with a spill that's a mere fraction of the 94 million to 184 million gallons that have so far leaked into the Gulf of Mexico. (Flickr/ Maven@China )

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While the climate bill is dead, for now, compromises over the last few months show us the debates likely over energy policy in the future.

Yesterday evening, climate and energy reform died in the Senate. All that remains is a nearly skeletal package responding to the BP oil spill, a few minor incentives for conservation, energy efficiency retrofits, and the development of natural gas trucks. Neither an economy-wide cap-and-trade system, nor the utilities-only compromise , is to be found in the proposed legislation. Even more stunning, a renewable electricity standard and an energy efficiency standard, long considered the centerpieces of any compromise excluding cap-and-trade, have also been scrapped . While a comprehensive climate bill is dead for the summer, and probably for the year, the intense compromises over the last few months hinged on elements of climate legislation that will likely come up in the future. TAP recently talked to Dave Foster, the executive director of the the BlueGreen Alliance. Foster explained the wisdom of the utilities-only compromise, the importance of a well-designed renewable electricity...

The Little Picture: McDermott Tells It Like It Is.

Rep. Jim McDermott , Democrat from Washington state, is not buying the GOP's claim that they delayed and whittled down a six-month extension for unemployment benefits because of deficit concerns. "The Republican leadership in Congress has decided that the way to get the White House back is by denying unemployment benefits to people who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own and show them that this government doesn't work," he said. After a grinding period of negotiation and concession , the legislative package, originally totaling nearly $200 billion in aid, finally passed both houses of Congress today, having been reduced to $34 billion. (Flickr/ seiuhealthcare775nw )

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