How the Department of Energy made your clothes less clean
Acton Institute Powerblog

How the Department of Energy made your clothes less clean

Note: This is post #38 in a weekly video series on basic microeconomics.

What happened to the cleanliness of your clothes after the U.S. Department of Energy issued new washing machine requirements? The requirements — which require washers to use 21% less energy — mean that washers actually clean clothes less than they used to, says economist Alex Tabarrok. In this video by Marginal Revolution University, Tabarrok considers whether “command and control” is an efficient way to achieve the desired outcome of less pollution).

(If you find the pace of the videos too slow, I’d recommend watching them at 1.5 to 2 times the speed. You can adjust the speed at which the video plays by clicking on “Settings” (the gear symbol) and changing “Speed” from normal to 1.25, 1.5 or 2.)

Previous in series: What the flu can teach us about economics

Joe Carter

Joe Carter is a Senior Editor at the Acton Institute. Joe also serves as an editor at the The Gospel Coalition, a communications specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and as an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. He is the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible and co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicator (Crossway).