Energy Subsidies

Energy Subsidies

 

Edward Kee shares news on the current nuclear energy situation in the US with insights on the deregulated electricity market and the energy subsidy policy.

Government energy subsidies are standing in the way of a clean US electricity system — and US nuclear.

Nuclear power in the United States is struggling, with well-maintained plants closing early and few new projects in the works.  At the heart of these struggles lies a failed gamble: regulators and policy makers bet that market forces in de-regulated electricity markets would lead to the electricity sector that best served the needs of society.

Sadly, deregulated electricity markets have fallen well short of this target.  When markets fail, economic theory recommends prudent regulation. Instead, we have US energy subsidy policy, a poor replacement.

The Logic of Energy Subsidies

Energy subsidies are intended to steer markets away from a course considered bad for society. During the early years of a technology’s commercialization, subsidies are often used to increase investment and development, as well as to protect nascent industries from competition. Starting in the Carter administration with the creation of the Department of Energy, support for alternative fuel, and later renewable energy, often had this second goal in mind. Any technology that could diminish US reliance on imported oil had value, over and above its costs to consumers. It was in the best interests of the US to support these industries and help them develop.[1]

 

Points covered in this article include:

  • Problems with energy subsidies
  • Closing nuclear plants
  • Phasing out subsidies for fossil fuels

 

Read the full article, Time to rethink renewable subsidies, on NuclearEconomics.com

 

 

Odin Muhlenbein and his colleagues co-authored an article that explains how social enterprises are solving the problem of youth unemployment in Africa. 

The issues that are the most pressing today will shape the legacies of the most powerful African political and business leaders of our time.

For the continent, the youth population boom and issues of employment are at the top of the list of priorities. Leaders at national, continental and global levels discuss these topics in the halls of the United Nations, the African Union and within talent-strapped businesses operating in the region. When it comes to the political and economic agendas of a continent dubbed “the most youthful” and projected to become the home of half of the world’s youth population by 2040, the “youth bulge” and the unemployment statistics inform the entire dialogue. Clearly, there is need for urgency, action and collaboration to create sustainable impact on a large scale.

 

This article includes approaches applied by leading social entrepreneurs in Africa to address the issue. 

 

Read the full article, Learning from social enterprises: How to solve youth unemployment in Africa, on the Devex website.