The Politics of Energy Transitions: From the Oil Crises to Climate Change

The emerging transition to clean energy is highly political—it imposes costs on some producers and consumers, while offering benefits to others. In this seminar, Jonas Meckling examines the conditions under which policymakers can adopt costly policies to drive transformative change in the energy system. He draws on government responses to the 1973 oil crisis to identify political varieties of energy transitions. Meckling will discuss important implications for the political opportunities and constraints for clean energy transitions.

Jonas Meckling is Associate Professor at the University of California, Berkeley, where he leads the Energy and Environment Policy Lab. Currently, he is also the Coleman P. Burke Distinguished Visiting Associate Professor at Yale University. Dr. Meckling studies the comparative and international politics of climate and clean energy policy. He is the author of two books, the latest of which is Carbon Coalitions (MIT Press). Meckling has published numerous articles in Nature Climate Change, Nature Energy, Science, and various other journals. He received major awards for his research, including the American Political Science Association's Emerging Young Scholar Award in the field of science, technology, and environmental politics. Previously, Meckling served as Senior Advisor to the German Minister for the Environment, was a Research Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School's Belfer Center, and worked at the European Commission. He holds a Ph.D. from the London School of Economics and Political Science.