Research Expertise and Interest

environmental economics, climate policy, integrated assessment models

Research Description

David Anthoff is an environmental economist who studies climate change and environmental policy. He co-develops the integrated assessment model FUND that is used widely in academic research and in policy analysis. His research has appeared in Nature, Science, the American Economic Review, Nature Climate Change, the Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists and other academic journals. He contributed a background research paper to the Stern Review and has advised numerous organizations (including US EPA, the German Bundesumweltamt and the Canadian National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy) on the economics of climate change.

He is an associate professor in the Energy and Resources Group at the University of California at Berkeley, a senior fellow at the Berkeley Institute for Data Science and a University Fellow at Resources for the Future. Previously he was an assistant professor in the School of Natural Resources and Environment at the University of Michigan, a postdoc at the University of California, Berkeley and a postdoc at the Economic and Social Research Institute in Ireland. He also was a visiting research fellow at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment, University of Oxford.

He holds a PhD (Dr. rer. pol.) in economics from the University of Hamburg (Germany) and the International Max Planck Research School on Earth System Modelling, a MSc in Environmental Change and Management from the University of Oxford (UK) and a M.Phil. in philosophy, logic and theory of science from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Germany).

In the News

Social Cost of Carbon Is More Than Triple the Federal Estimate

A new study led by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and the nonprofit Resources for the Future (RFF) estimates that the social cost of carbon — a key metric for evaluating the future cost of climate change — is more than three times the value currently used by the U.S. federal government.

In calculating the social cost of methane, equity matters

What is the cost of one ton of a greenhouse gas? When a climate-warming gas such as carbon dioxide or methane is emitted into the atmosphere, its impacts may be felt years and even decades into the future – in the form of rising sea levels, changes in agricultural productivity, or more extreme weather events, such as droughts, floods, and heat waves. Those impacts are quantified in a metric called the “social cost of carbon,” considered a vital tool for making sound and efficient climate policies. Now a new study by a team including researchers from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and UC Berkeley reports that the social cost of methane – a greenhouse gas that is 30 times as potent as carbon dioxide in its ability to trap heat – varies by as much as an order of magnitude between industrialized and developing regions of the world.

Researchers provide "social cost of carbon" roadmap

The Biden administration is revising the social cost of carbon (SCC), a decade-old cost-benefit metric used to inform climate policy by placing a monetary value on the impact of climate change. In a newly published analysis in the journal Nature, a team of researchers lists a series of measures the administration should consider in recalculating the SCC.

Featured in the Media

Please note: The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or positions of UC Berkeley.
February 19, 2021
Brook Hays
President Joe Biden and his administration want to recalibrate the "social cost of carbon," a metric used to inform public policy decision making by putting a price on the non-market impacts of carbon emissions on the environment and human health. In a new paper, a group of researchers in the fields of economics, ethics and environmental science offered a series of recommendations for the revision process. "Economic analysis is at the heart of the regulatory process in the U.S. and will therefore play a major role in shaping and informing the ambitious climate goals from the new administration," said David Anthoff, study co-author and assistant professor of energy and resources at the University of California, Berkeley. "Our recommendations offer a roadmap for how this can be done in a way that is both scientifically rigorous and transparent."
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