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The promotion of renewable energy innovation: When state intervention and competition go hand in hand

Lionel Nesta () and Francesco Vona ()

Sciences Po publications from Sciences Po

Abstract: This policy brief addresses the issue of the complementarity of policies supporting renewable energy and market competition in fostering green innovation. Innovation is commonly regarded as the best answer to sustaining current life standards while overcoming severe environmental concerns. This is especially relevant in the case of energy, where increasing resource scarcity calls for the rapid development of alternative energy sources, notably renewable energy. 2) Although as of today, renewable energy (RE henceforth) cannot compete with fossil fuel in terms of production costs, impressive technological progress has paved the way to new promising sources such as biomass, solar and wind, among others. 3) Countries too have developed areas of specialization in specific types of renewable energy sources: for example, Denmark has established a strong technological advantage in wind technologies, Sweden and Germany have specialized in bioenergy, Germany and Spain in solar, Norway and Austria in Hydropower. France, with its specialization in nuclear energy, seems to be lagging behind in RE innovation, as compared with other major players such as the USA or Germany.

Keywords: Renewable energy; Green innovation; Market competition (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q2 Q4 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ene, nep-env, nep-ino, nep-reg and nep-tid
Date: 2014-10
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Published in OFCE Briefing Paper, 2014, pp.1-7

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