ManagEnergy – Renewable Energy

Government Energy Policy




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Governments must invest in renewable technologies that are cost-effective and reliable to achieve their energy policy goals. Governments can provide support to clean energy companies in many ways, including through tax incentives and other financial policies.

Among these are the production tax credit (PTC) and the investment tax credit. These credits can be extended to benefit the entire clean-energy industry and are an important part a good tax policy.

Energy Efficiency

Governments can set an example by encouraging energy efficiency policies and programs for public facilities, equipment, government operations, and other public facilities. These include energy data management and evaluation, enacting retrofit programs for existing public buildings, procuring energy-efficient appliances and equipment (including vehicles), and establishing energy efficiency operations and maintenance procedures.

Energy efficiency is a key factor in economic development. It reduces costs for consumers, increases disposable income, and lowers operating costs for businesses as well as the public sector. It also reduces air pollution and energy use by reducing the amount of energy needed to operate appliances, electronics, and industrial processes.

Despite these benefits, energy efficiency often falls short of its potential in the U.S. because of a variety of barriers. One major barrier is a lack of consistent and standardized energy usage and cost data that would help companies and the public understand how they are using energy. Credit constraints are another barrier that prevents people from purchasing the more costly equipment that will reduce their natural gas and electricity costs.

Renewable Energy

Renewable energy, which is electricity that is generated from renewable sources and does not run out like sunlight or wind, is becoming the most affordable power option in most regions of the world. Nevertheless, many barriers remain that slow down the deployment of renewable energy technologies.

One of the most important policy issues is the development of renewable portfolio standards (RPSs). RPS policies in states generally require that a certain percentage of the state’s electricity power sales be from eligible renewable resources like wind, solar, biomass, and hydroelectric facilities.

The RPS standards are intended to reduce the use of fossil fuels and to improve the reliability of the power grid. They also encourage the development of new clean energy projects.

While the private sector plays a significant role in accelerating the deployment of renewable energy technologies, there are cases where government could also play a larger role. These are areas where the private sector is not as eager to invest and where government can play a strategic role in ensuring that renewable technology investments meet social goals.

Energy Storage

The electricity grid can be responsive and flexible thanks to energy storage. This is important when the amount of renewable electricity being generated is unpredictable, such as during cloudy days or high demand periods.

There are many types of energy storage technology. These include batteries, thermal energy storage, and power electronics.

Battery storage is the most popular type of energy storage system. It is an ideal technology for a variety of applications, such as frequency regulation, frequency balancing, and demand response.

The US Department of Energy (DOE) conducts research and development to develop new and better energy storage systems. This helps support economic growth, lowers costs, and promotes U.S. leadership on clean energy and climate change.

Developing long-duration energy storage systems can help the energy system function smoothly with more renewables and reduce emissions. It also can increase efficiency and improve grid stability.

Carbon Dioxide

Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas that causes global warming. Emissions of carbon dioxide are measured in kilotonnes (CO2-e).

Direct emissions are caused by the burning of fuels for heat or power, chemical reactions and leaks from industrial equipment and systems. Indirect emissions come from the production of electricity at power plants and use of petroleum products for manufacturing chemicals, metals, and minerals.

Governments must reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase their inventories to combat climate change. The government must also implement policies to reduce the demand for fossil fuels in order to achieve their emission reduction goals.

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