Blog Political Science and Public Administration

 

Francesc Morata e Israel Solorio, eds. (en prensa)

 

This volume to be published in 2012 by Edward Elgar is a collective contribution to the emergent literature dealing with the European energy policy. It highlights the significance of environmental policy concerns, instruments, and objectives vis-à-vis the competing security and market dimensions in order to achieve an all-embracing EU energy policy perspective for the future. The authors have been encouraged to underscore the green element of the European energy policy, a frequently neglected although essential element for building a forward-looking energy policy for the XXI Century in Europe. The book is organized into two main parts encompassing both the internal and the external dimensions of the European energy policy.

 

In the Introduction, Solorio and Morata review the influence of the environmental pillar on the EU’s energy policy providing the analytical framework of the volume. In Chapter 2, Camilla Adelle, Duncan Russel and Marc Pallemaerts touch upon the sensitive issue of the integration of energy and climate change – and, in general, environmental – policies in the EU. The chapter draws on the longer-standing difficulties of translating the concept of Environmental Policy Integration (EPI) in policy and administrative terms. In Chapter 3 Jørgen K. Knudsen examines how EPI has been incorporated into the promotion of RES in the EU. The empirical analysis of the implementation process in the Nordic countries (Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Norway) provides an assessment of the extent to which EPI and RES-E have been connected and followed up in these states. In Chapter 4 Per-Olof Busch and Helge Jörgens put the spotlight on the diffusion of RES policies in the EU. Their contribution attempts to assess the impact of EU programmes on the degree of convergence achieved in this field by the Member States as a form of Europeanization. Drawing on an analytical scheme based on three classic modes of international policy coordination (cooperation, coercion and diffusion), the authors examine the cross-national spread of support schemes for electricity generation from renewable energy sources from 1988 to 2005. In Chapter 5, Severin Fischer also applies the Europeanization approach to the issue of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS). The chapter examines in depth the complex policy process followed by the CCS system in the EU. It sheds light on the relevant role played the European Commission and the European Parliament in setting the environmental standards to be respected, the pressures from some Member States acting as front-runners and the multilevel interactions between political and economic actors to get public financial support to private operators. To finish the first part of the book, Israel Solorio and Esther Zapater (Chapter 6) cope with the Europeanization of energy governance in the EU and the relative importance of the ‘green driver’ (i.e. ‘green Europeanization’ of energy governance). It provides a broad picture of the institutionalization of energy policy at the European level and the predominant forms of governance in this process.

 

The external dimension part starts with Chapter 7 and the exploration of the marketization of energy policy in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). Starting from the ill-known environmental regulatory legacy of these countries before their accession to the EU Michael Dobbins and Jale Tosun review the marked-based instruments put in practice in CEE showing up the differences with regard to EU-15 (i.e. limits of the EU as a ‘green-energy’ model exporter towards the CEE countries). Chapter 8 is focused on the EU’s energy security issue with regard to its Eastern neighbours and the Southern Caucasus as the most relevant areas in terms of supply and transit of natural gas. The main research question put forward by Anna Herranz and Michael Natorski is about the extent to which the EU’s concerns with energy security has invested its foreign policy impacting also on other strategic areas (i.e. testing the role of the EU as a ‘green-energy’ model exporter towards the East). Andrea Ciambra (Chapter 9) addresses the question of whether - and how - the EU’s external relations policy combines its twofold strategy towards promoting competitiveness and sustainability concerns with regard to energy issues. Drawing on the creation of the Energy Community (EnC), Ciambra evaluates the degree of socialization achieved in this area through the penetration of the energy’s acquis (i.e. the EU as a ‘green-energy’ model exporter towards the Western Balkan countries). In Chapter 10, Luigi Carafa turns to the EU’s influence on the energy sector reform in Turkey. The analytical focus draws on the transformative power of the EU in the international system and the impacts of Europeanization beyond its borders. The enlargement policy is a main driver to promote changes in the energy policy sector of candidate countries, like Turkey, that must adapt their domestic regulations to comply with the requirements of the acquis communautaire. As an example of an experimental external European energy policy, Chapter 11 explores the efforts of the EU to foster the deployment of RES in the southern shore of the Mediterranean. Gonzalo Escribano-Francés and Enrique San Martín González investigate the reasons behind the launching of the Mediterranean Solar Plan paying particular attention to the case of Morocco as the best positioned country in the region to implement the Plan.  In the conclusive remarks, Francesc Morata and Israel Solorio assess the overall ‘green contribution’ to the construction of a European energy policy and the prospects for further research in the field.