U.S. Energy Policy in the 2016 Elections: Incremental or Transformational?
Panel Discussions on:
The Importance of Bipartisan Energy Policy
Oil and Natural Gas Production, Distribution and Refining
Electric Power Sector
The Future of Transportation
State and City Leadership
The United States is one of the largest energy producing and consuming countries in the world and a global leader on energy and climate issues. In recent years energy markets, policies, and technologies have been simultaneously responding to, and creating many changes. These include: the precipitous rise then slowdown of Chinese economic growth and energy consumption; record high commodity prices followed by the current low price environment; the nuclear renaissance and post-Fukushima retraction; financial collapse and monetary stimulus; an oil and gas production revolution in the United States and cyclical restructuring and reform; dramatic cost reductions in solar and wind energy; utilization of energy and financial sanctions; geopolitical flux in key energy producing regions; and a global commitment coupled with regional actions designed to achieve a low carbon future. These changes impact the consumer, the economy, the environment, and U.S. national security in fundamental ways. Whether the future will continue to be so transformative or will veer more toward more incremental change is an open question that U.S. policymakers, businesses, and civil society must address.
Each election cycle affords policymakers an opportunity to assess the state of the nation’s energy sector in the context of shared objectives and within the context of a dynamic global energy landscape. U.S. energy policy is driven by economic, security, and environmental priorities, but fundamental tensions continue to exist between those priorities and among the various constituencies involved in the nation’s energy sectors. The purpose of this conference is to inform the current debate on U.S. energy policymaking and assess what areas are ripe for action.