SWEEEP Webinar Series- Meng Kyle

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  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Apr 07 2021
  • Time: 9:00 am - 10:00 am

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Apr 07 2021


3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

SWEEEP Webinar Series- Meng Kyle

Estimating Path Dependence in Energy Transitions

SpeakerKyle Meng, UC Santa Barbara

What induces clean energy transitions? When transitional dynamics exhibit strong path dependence, a temporary shock to input composition can trigger permanent structural change. I examine whether such dynamics characterize the U.S. electricity sector’s use of coal – the most climate-damaging fuel – across the 20th century. Exploiting local coal supply shocks driven by changing regional accessibility of subsurface coal, I find increasing imbalance in the coal composition of electricity capital lasting ten decades following a shock. A structural change model enables recovery of a key substitution parameter from reduced-form estimates and explores conditions for triggering sustained future clean energy transitions.

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