John Whitehead already mentioned our joint AERE/USAEE session at the SEA meetings last week. It turned out well, a combination of carbon offsets analysis and electricity market design experiments. Rim Baltaduonis from Gettysburg College presented two different, interesting experimental papers, one on designing rules for enabling contracts for carbon sequestration in soil (which is a tricky and difficult problem), and one on the individual and system effects in an electric power network of different retail contracts (fixed, TOU, RTP with and without real-time information). The latter paper is very interesting and has some results that I’ll definitely want to discuss here, but he’s not distributing it yet, so I’ll bide my time. The third paper was a very elegant and informative model of different aspects of carbon offsets from Heather Klemick at the EPA. The cross-pollination of the environmental/resource economists and the energy economists made for a wide-ranging and interesting discussion. Thanks to John for letting us co-sponsor a session with AERE!
There were several other highlights, including the panel I chaired on research funding in economics, the panel on which I presented a paper that I’ll discuss here after I revise it (the punch line across all of the papers on that panel was “one size does not fit all!”), the Institute for Humane Studies cocktail reception, and the sessions and banquet for the Society for the Development of Austrian Economics. A very enjoyable conference.