Why the U.S. Does Not Have a Renewable Energy Policy
E. Donald Elliott
Yale Law School
July 4, 2011
43 Environmental Law Reporter 10095 (Feb. 2013)
Yale Law & Economics Research Paper No. 433
There is a large gap between the percentage of electricity generated from renewable sources in the U.S. and EU. This paper argues the reasons are not just a failure of policy in the U.S. but also matters of deep political structure and culture. Federalism, separation of powers, changing policies with frequent changes of governing political parties, free market ideology, and popular expectations of cheap energy born of large historic supplies of fossil fuels are all discussed. The author then mounts a "half-hearted and partial" defense of the U.S. approach in terms of the maxmin strategy in game theory and portfolio theory in economics.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 7
Keywords: Renewable energy, Comparative energy policy
JEL Classification: Q20, Q40, Q42, Q48Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: July 5, 2011 ; Last revised: December 6, 2013
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