The Palgrave Handbook of International Energy Economics

The future of energy has moved to centre stage in the political and economic debate at the national and international levels. Prompted by concerns for global warming, we have entered a phase of policy rather than solely market-driven energy transitions, which have turned energy from a mostly technological and occasionally geopolitical issue into a vital subject of economic policy and area of conflict between opposing interest groups. This book has the ambition to become a reference for readers who wish to be active in the debate and need basic understanding of the economics of energy in its international setting. Presenting a comprehensive overview of the issue, this book aims to be accessible to a wide readership of both academics and professionals working in the energy industry, as well as to graduate students and to general readers interested in the complexities of the economics of international energy. The energy landscape changes frequently: multiple publications are available that monitor developments, either of the energy environment as a whole or of segments of the same, and these are continuously updated. We aim at complementing this abundant and frequently very professional literature with a reference book that will help readers understand the advantages and disadvantages, the opportunities and limits that characterize alternative solutions in the light of economic, and not just technological analysis. An economic approach and understanding is necessary, because technology offers multiple alternative solutions to our energy challenges (which, of course, is reassuring) but not all come at the same cost or promise the same economic reward. Furthermore, frequently the cost/reward profile of each technological solution is not intrinsic, but depends on circumstances—geographic, meteorological, demographic and social—as well as on the composition of the rest of the energy system, that is, on all other solutions that are adopted in parallel.

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