Dr. Benjamin Sovacool discusses barriers to the development of commercial grid connected renewable electricity projects, to distributed forms of generation and energy efficiency practices. His presentation examines the technical, economic, political and social barriers to such renewable energy projects with a specific focus on the United States. With the advancement of renewable energy becoming increasingly linked to climate law and policy developments; the presentation explores the institutional challenges, economic barriers, regulatory hurdles, and social attitudes impacting, and often slowing, the diffusion of cleaner sources of electricity supply. However, to prevent driving the audience to despair, the presentation also discusses an array of different policy mechanisms that can overcome these pesky barriers.
Dr. Sovacool is Professor of Business and Social Sciences at Aarhus University in Denmark and Associate Professor of Law at Vermont Law School. He is an internationally renowned scholar and energy policy expert who has authored and edited 16 books and more than 250 peer-reviewed articles, chapters, and reports. He is also the editor-in-chief of Energy Research and Social Science, published by Elsevier. Professor Sovacool has served in advisory and research capacities at the U.S. National Science Foundation’s Electric Power Networks Efficiency and Security Program, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, U.S. Department of Energy’s Climate Change Technology Program, Union of Concerned Scientists, the International Energy Agency in Paris, France, and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in Geneva, Switzerland, among others.