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2014

Boston College Law School

Administrative Law

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Federalism And The Rise Of Renewable Energy: Preserving State And Local Voices In The Green Energy Revolution, Daniel A. Lyons Dec 2014

Federalism And The Rise Of Renewable Energy: Preserving State And Local Voices In The Green Energy Revolution, Daniel A. Lyons

Boston College Law School Faculty Papers

The rise of renewable energy has disrupted the traditional regulatory structure governing electricity. Unlike traditional fossil fuel power plants, wind and solar facilities are geographically constrained: they exist where the wind blows and the sun shines. Large-scale renewable energy is more likely to flow interstate, from resource-rich prairie and Southwestern states to energy-hungry population centers elsewhere. The difficulties of coordinating interstate electricity policies have led some to call for greater preemption of the states’ traditional duties as chief regulators of the electricity industry. But while preemption would eliminate some state-level roadblocks to interstate cooperation, it would sacrifice many of the ...