USAEE Dialogue

Vol. 22, No. 3 (October 2014)

USAEE Dialogue is the official on-line Newsletter of the US Association for Energy Economics.  Its mission is to communicate recent research, analyses and case studies on issues of energy economics that are of general interest to the membership. Articles are invited from members of IAEE in all sectors of the energy economics’ community -- business/consulting, government and academia (including students) -- who live and/or work in North America. USAEE Dialogue is also a forum for reports of local USAEE Chapter activities. For further information please consult: "Guidelines for Submissions of Articles" at




From the President, USAEE

Michael Canes
Distinguished Fellow
Logistics Management Institute
(McLean, VA)


I’m pleased to report to the USAEE membership that we hosted an extremely successful IAEE international conference in New York City this past June.  Record numbers of participants (583) and of abstract submissions (over 780) were just two metrics reflecting the interest and response of IAEE members from around the world, including of course the USA.  The conference was organized so as to be of interest not only to our academic members but also to those from business and government.  For example, there was a session on oil and gas reserve evaluation and financing, two on emerging challenges to electric utilities, and another on recent developments in transportation.  Happily, USAEE also managed to make some money from the conference, money that will be fully reinvested in Association activities to offer ever improving services to the membership.



From the Editor

Robert Eric Borgström
Advisor on Energy Regulatory Policy & Management
(Washington, DC)

As we busy ourselves with fall activities, this issue of USAEE Dialogue reflects upon the highly successful IAEE International Conference that we enjoyed this summer in New York City.  Included herein is an overview of the conference by USAEE National Student Representative, Derek Nixon; write-ups on the Student Best Paper Award, the Student Poster Competition and the Case Study Competition; and summaries of selected Concurrent Session Presentations.

Also featured in this issue are the following full-length papers from our fellow USAEE members:

  • “From Rio to Kyoto to Paris: Hopes and Realities for Global Warming Policy,” by Joel Darmstadter, Senior Fellow of Resources for the Future and this year’s recipient of USAEE’s Adelman-Frankel Award.
  • “Energy in 2013 – Taking Stock: Highlights from the 2014 BP Statistical Review of World Energy,” by Mark Finley of BP America and his colleagues at BP plc in London.  And,
  • “EPA’s Program for Carbon Reductions Is in Line with Power Sector Trends,” by John R. Weinberger, an attorney and public power consultant specializing in energy and environmental issues.





Energy in 2013 – Taking Stock:

Highlights from the 2014 BP Statistical Review of World Energy


Mark Finley
General Manager, Global Markets,
BP America, Inc.
(Washington, DC)
Christof Rühl
Chief Economist & Vice President, BP plc
(London, UK)
Alexander Naumov
Macro Economist, BP plc
(London, UK )





Today, the energy world looks rather different than it did ten years ago; much of what we took for granted has changed. The dominant role of the developing world in energy growth, oil prices above $100 and a wide gap between regional gas prices, the emergence at scale of renewables and uncoventional oil and gas – many would have found all of this hard to believe ten years ago.  Yet, nowdays we think of these trends as normal. If we loosely group together fuels that classify as “new”, simply by virtue of having not been of any materiality a decade ago, including renewables, then these accounted for 81% of global primary energy production growth last year.  The global energy system is huge and moves only slowly, but it does move. It is the purpose of this paper to review the latest global energy developments and to document changes in global energy markets based on the 2014 edition of BP Statistical Review of World Energy.[1] The best place to start is by investigating the relationship between energy and the economy.





Featured Articles 


An invited paper by the Recipient of the 2014 USAEE's Adelman-Frankel Award

From Rio to Kyoto to Paris:

Hopes and Realities for Global Warming Policy


Joel Darmstadter
Senior Fellow,
Resources for the Future,
(Washington, DC)


In Nov. 2015, delegates from around the world will assemble in Paris to debate and draft a comprehensive global agreement on policies, effective 2020, to spare humanity the distress and risks of climate change and global warming.  Inevitably, a key element of such an agreement would mean focusing on society’s continued and major dependence on fossil energy, whose greenhouse gas emissions a preponderant segment of the scientific community considers the underlying cause of the climatic threat.[1]  Yet, when judged by historic trends and unfulfilled goals, the path ahead seems problematic.




EPA’s Program for Carbon Reductions Is In Line With Power Sector Trends

John R. Weinberger *
(Washington, DC)


U.S. EPA’s recently proposed “Clean Power Plan,” to limit power plant CO₂ emissions to 30% below 2005 levels by 2030, sets modest and attainable goals.[i]  The proposed EPA rule regulates emissions at the state level.  It sets a 2030 aggregate emission rate target for each state and allows states enormous flexibility to develop and implement their own policies to improve carbon emission rates, or develop policies jointly with other states.  The Clean Power Plan will not bring about dramatic transformation of the power sector, but instead will lock-in market and regulatory trends that are already in place. 


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