Energy Security and Public Policy. Some Implications for Global Governance in Oil and Gas

March 17, 2010 - 12:45 - 14:00
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The reason that the world has come to prominently discuss ‘energy security’ is as simple as fundamental: technological innovation has come to be geographically detached from natural resources endowment. Energy security by definition has strong public policy characteristics and relates to problems of market failure of global scale. These may occur due to imperfect competition; negative externalities; lack of information; or the presence of public goods. Cases in point are the existence of market distorting cartels; a lack of data on the global oil market; economic costs related to price shocks; the security of global transport routes; or the maintenance of crucial reserve capacity. In all these cases, classical free rider problems arise and ‘energy security’ risks being under-provided by the market altogether. This brown bag will discuss the paper which discusses challenges in global energy from a public policy angle and draws conclusions on implications for global energy governance, i.e. an institutional structure facilitating the effective provision of energy security as a global public good.