As the coal industry weakens economically, it also loses political clout.
Tighter regulation contributes to an environmentally dirty industry’s economic decline, which reduces its political clout, which allows more regulation, further weakening the industry. Coal is prime example. The coal industry’s economic plight is well-known. Coal production is the lowest since a major strike 35 years ago. In fact, my colleagues at the business school report that coal …CONTINUE READING
The two parties couldn’t disagree more about energy policy.
In every election, there are people who claim that both parties are alike. That’s certainly not true about energy policy this year.The distance between the tickets can be expressed numerically: Kaine has a 91% lifetime score of from the League of Conservation Voters, while Pence’s is 4%. And the differences between the presidential candidates are equally …CONTINUE READING
Supporting renewable energy in Wyoming makes political sense
A company wants to build a lot of wind power in Wyoming. A lot. 3,000 megawatts. The size of three nuclear reactors. And ship all of the power to California. None of it will be used in Wyoming, where electricity primarily comes from coal, and where the state has been strongly resistant to various policies …CONTINUE READING
Trying to save energy in Europe and around the Mediterranean
Brussels is at least two cities in one: a modern European municipality rich in history and containing some spectacular gilded palaces, and a capital city. It is the seat of government for Belgium – a flag flies over the palace when the king is nearby – and the capital for the European Union. The governing …CONTINUE READING
The rising political power of residential solar power
There’s a fight over renewable energy occurring in Arizona right now. The state’s largest public utility asked state regulators for permission to greatly increase the fees paid by homeowners who have solar power on their houses. The utility’s argument is that the increase in solar power produced by these houses is putting a burden on …CONTINUE READING
A full-day UCLA Law Review symposium on Friday, November 1
The UCLA Law Review is holding a symposium next Friday, November 1 – Toward a Clean Energy Future: Powering Innovation Through Law. Leading scholars from around the country will be at UCLA School of Law for the day to discuss innovative energy technologies, international energy issues, the challenge of new energy technology diffusion, and the …CONTINUE READING
You might think that business schools would take the same views of policy as the Chamber of Commerce, but that’s not necessarily true. The Haas School here at Berkeley has a very interesting energy blog. I don’t always find their conclusions congenial but they’re always interesting. Here are some recent posts: Information and energy use. …CONTINUE READING
In trying to read the effect of the 2012 elections on national energy policy, there are at least five places to look: 1. Continuity at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission One of the more dramatic changes that occurred during the first Obama term was a shift in the mission of the Federal Regulatory Commission. FERC …CONTINUE READING
The more fundamental issue, of course, is what these policies would do to global climate and how they would harm future generations. If our descendents could vote, that’s the issue they’d care the most about.CONTINUE READING
After I posted a description of the Republican platform, a reader suggested that a side-by-side comparison would be helpful when the Democratic Platform came out. Here it is, presented as objectively as I could. Subject Democratic Platform Republican Platform Regulatory reform Give president power to reorganize agencies. Congressional approval required for all major rules. …CONTINUE READING