Inequality in the Energy Market

There is an intense debate on the energy transition: who is responsible for the transition and who should pay for the costs?

Organisator Studium Generale

di 19 februari 2019 20:00 tot 22:00

Locatie Impulse, gebouwnummer 115
Zaal/kamer Speakers' corner

Tonight’s lecture explores what policy measures to promote the energy transition imply for the efficiency of the transition and for different consumer groups. Although taxes on greenhouse gas emissions are considered the most efficient way to promote the energy transition, these are barely implemented. Why has been chosen for other measures such as energy agreements and subsidies, and what makes these measures more costly and less effective?

Learn what these measures mean for the position and opportunities of different actors, such as large, small, established and new companies, and large, small and vulnerable consumers. How does this play a role in energy poverty, which is a problem even in developed countries? Discuss what alternative methods of regulation might be used to strike a better balance between the energy transition and the interests of different stakeholders.

About Annelies Huygen

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Annelies Huygen is professor by special appointment of Regulating Energy Markets at the University of Amsterdam's (UvA) Faculty of Law. In addition, she is principal advisor at TNO (the Netherlands Organisation for applied scientific research). Annelies Huygen is an economist and lawyer, and uses this multidisciplinary background in her work, where she studies how energy markets can be organized from an economic, social, sustainability and legal perspective. A challenge in this is to develop organisational structures and regulations that help to integrate solar and wind energy at an acceptable cost, without disrupting energy markets. In her work, she is particularly interested in the emergence of local energy supplies, where citizens and companies generate their own electricity. What legal changes are required to enable these newcomers to access energy markets just as easily as established parties?

Annelies Huygen has conducted extensive research on the regulation and governance of electricity markets and other markets. Her present work includes acting as joint project leader for the international EU-financed interdisciplinary SI-drive (Social Innovation Drive) project. This research project focuses on social innovation driven by increasing civic participation, such as in the energy and healthcare sectors.

About Lecture Series ‘Ecological Inequality’

The transition towards sustainability might be something we can no longer afford to avoid. But how will the benefits and costs be distributed, and how will it affect inequality?

In the wake of the Katowice Climate Change Conference urging the world to embrace rigorous measures, discussions do not only revolve around the efficacy of climate policies, but also around their equity. Who is paying for these measures? Who are the winners and losers of such transition processes?

In this series, we use the concept of ecological inequality to shed light on the (potential) inequality implications of sustainability transitions, and the trade-offs embedded in these processes. Explore how transition processes may run the risk of increasing polarization between haves and have-nots. And what about the other way around? Under what conditions can sustainability measures have the potential to mitigate inequalities and to challenge existing wealth and power relations?