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Journal Articles The Taiwan Law Review Year : 2022

A Revolution for Energy Law: Research and Practice


With different world events (COVID-19, a financial crisis and the Russia-Ukraine war) happening in quick succession it continues to be clear that energy plays a key role in economies today. With the United Nations climate change conference (COP27) looming, climate change action needs to remain at the forefront of energy and economic policy despite these events. One particular reason why, is that continuing a business-as-usual approach will continue to be detrimental to restoring justice in society’s energy sectors and economies. Justice has not been at the forefront of energy and economic policy for decades. These sectors need to move on from a focus on economic development as a key purpose and motivation. There are many other considerations today - such as energy security, energy affordability, energy investment, environmental impact, public health and climate change mitigation and adaptation – all of which will increase justice within society. Energy research has been growing in a holistic way whereby researchers are connecting their research to the bigger picture of an “energy system”. Energy law scholarship has lacked this direction and traditionally has focused too narrowly on specific topics such as electricity markets or extraction. A major limitation has permeated through scholarship in the area and relatively no connection is made to the energy system. Energy law scholarship did not for example, state where the energy system can improve and deliver a just outcome. The lack of identifying such a connection has permitted energy law scholars to fall under the radar and continue to work on issues that in essence support the continued development of traditional energy sources, i.e., fossil fuels. Only a minority of researchers have shifted their focus in a real and impactful way to ensuring energy law delivers just outcomes for society. Many scholars remain reluctant to read beyond traditional research in energy law not to mention engage in interdisciplinary energy journals which increasingly publish legal scholarship. This article calls for the further development of modern energy law scholars and practitioners. For such scholars to exist, there needs to be a revolution in energy law scholarship and practice to ensure law contributes to the ongoing global climate emergency


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hal-03894863 , version 1 (12-12-2022)



Raphael Heffron. A Revolution for Energy Law: Research and Practice. The Taiwan Law Review, 2022, 330 (330), pp.50-62. ⟨10.53106/1025593133004⟩. ⟨hal-03894863⟩
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