On January 23, Projects partner and team co-leader Rob James spoke to the Environmental Law & Policy Colloquium at Stanford Law School on "How Much Is Energy Subsidized?" In his presentation, he reviewed the public estimates of subsidies--ranging from trillions of dollars annually to zero dollars annually--and the definitional complexities associated with measuring the incentives afforded to fossil fuels and renewable sources.
Invoking the spirit of George Orwell, Rob encouraged participants to move beyond the definitions to considering all the policy tools, both specific to energy and more broadly available, that participants care about when they talk about subsidies. He unveiled an Energy Policy Palette that such policy discussions could use without being constrained by a single definition of "subsidy."
It goes without saying that Rob is an excellent transactional lawyer. What set him apart is that he set a tone of civility and professionalism in the negotiation that unfortunately is getting rare.
Stanford Law School