Tackling Oil on the Demand-Side

The giant Gulf Coast oil spill is highlighting the severe environmental risks of offshore oil drilling and will doubtless make it harder to open more of the coastal US to future drilling. Nevertheless, it’s worth emphasizing that even when oil isn’t pouring out into the ocean, burning it is still an environmental and public health catastrophe. And ultimately the only way to get it under control is with demand-side measures—higher taxes, relaxation of anti-density regulations, more mass transit, etc.