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Strategic Clean Technology Policies for Climate Change (STRATECHPOL)
Start date: Jul 8, 2014, End date: Dec 7, 2016 PROJECT  FINISHED 

"Renewable energy targets and support programs form a major part of efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the E.U. and abroad—but not without controversy. Recent studies indicate that the implied abatement costs from European renewable energy policies are significantly higher than corresponding ETS allowance prices. Furthermore, the generators that benefit from these policies already operate in a market subject to the ETS cap, meaning that additional abatement via renewable energy can be offset by reduced effort among other covered units.Overlapping policy instruments can be justified by overlapping policy goals. In addition to domestic emissions abatement, stated rationales for renewable energy support include promoting technological innovation, exports, employment and energy security. One question is whether the extra cost of abatement from renewables over other alternatives is outweighed by these other benefits. Another is whether green industrial policy and trade promotion is consistent with WTO obligations.I propose to explore the value of clean technology programs above and beyond their emissions abatement potential, with a focus on innovation. The approach will blend economic theory, modeling, and empirical techniques and extend the literatures on environmental policy and induced innovation, directed technical change, and strategic trade policies. The methods will address key questions for interdisciplinary research in trade law and the environment. To what extent do clean energy technologies exhibit stronger external benefits than other innovating technologies, and to what extent do popular clean technology policies bring forth those benefits? Of particular interest is the potential role of international spillovers in clean energy technologies as a justification for aggressive renewable energy support, and whether the economics indicate that WTO law should make more room for green industrial policy."
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