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Essays on energy and environmental policy


This dissertation examines topics at the intersection of environmental and energy economics. The first two chapters explore how policies can induce more efficient use of the energy sources available for generating electricity. The electricity sector is a major source of a wide variety of harmful pollutants. To mitigate the environmental impacts of electricity production, a variety of policies are being implemented to increase the quantity of generation from clean, renewable energy sources. The first chapter identifies the short-run reductions in emissions caused by generation from a particular renewable technology; wind turbines. Using the estimates of the pollution offset by the renewable production, I explore the efficiency of the incentives created by the current set of renewable energy policies. The second chapter examines the impact adding bulk electricity storage capacity will have on the full social costs of generating electricity. The third chapter explores the impact of various gasoline tax structures on both retail price volatility and state revenue volatility

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