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CLIMATE OF CAPITULATION

Vivian Thomson
Saturday, March 24th, 7:00PM
Event address: 
10720 Preston Road
Ste 1009B
Dallas, TX 75230
Climate of Capitulation: An Insider's Account of State Power in a Coal Nation Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780262036344
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mit Press - April 21st, 2017

Who wields power--and how--in environmental policy making at the state level, and how to fight ingrained political favoritism toward coal and electric utilities. A rare environmental policy insider's story that starts in Virginia and extends to 15 other coal states, including Texas.

Coal-fired power plants emit air pollution that harms public health and contributes to climate change. States determine exactly how power plants must meet the Clean Air Act's standards. In CLIMATE OF CAPITULATION, Vivian Thomson offers an insider's account of how power is wielded at the state level when coal air pollution threatens people and ecosystems. Thomson, a former member of Virginia's State Air Pollution Control Board, identifies a "climate of capitulation" in state government -- a deeply rooted favoritism toward coal and electric utilities in states' air pollution policies.

Thomson narrates three cases involving coal and air pollution from her time on the Air Board. In so doing, she illuminates overt and covert power struggles that involved a host of players, including Governors Mark Warner and Tim Kaine. Thomson links Virginia's climate of capitulation with campaign donations that make legislators politically indebted to coal and electric utility interests, a traditionalistic political culture tending to inertia, and a part-time legislature that depends on outside groups for information and bill drafting.

Extending her analysis to fifteen other coal-dependent states, including Texas, Thomson offers policy reforms aimed at mitigating ingrained biases toward coal and electric utilities in states' air pollution policy making.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Vivian E. Thomson is former Professor of Environmental Sciences and Politics at the University of Virginia, where she taught from 1997 to 2017. Her work has taken her to Brazil, Denmark (where she was a Fulbright Professor), Germany, India, and Panama.