Limit: 15 students
This class will cover the laws and policies designed to promote renewable energy development. The course will first review the existing renewable energy technologies and the practical limitations involved in their development, siting, and integration into the U.S. electricity grid. The course will then explore the dominant renewable energy laws, including subsidies renewable portfolio standards, feed-in tariffs, and net metering. The course will consider how these laws operate within a regulatory system developed for monopolistic utilities and evaluate whether the renewable energy policies adequately consider the market and regulatory dynamics of natural monopoly regulation. The course will also explore the constitutionality of various renewable energy policies, many of which may implicate the dormant commerce clause. The class will focus on renewable energy development in the United States, but will also provide some comparative examples of renewable energy policies used in other countries.
Students will write a seminar paper with a mandatory rewrite. The paper can satisfy either the WIE or Capstone writing requirement.
Prerequisites: Energy law, northwest energy law, or fundamentals of energy law (summer course). Students who can demonstrate familiarity with the current system of electricity regulation may also enroll with prior approval of the instructor.
Note: This class will meet for four hours per week for the first 6.5 weeks and then suspend class meetings until the end of the semester. At the end of the semester, the class will meet for a full-day workshop in which students will present their completed papers to the rest of the class.