The politics of renewable energy production in a federalist context: The deployment of small hydropower in the Swiss cantons

Stadelmann-Steffen, Isabelle; Rieder, Stefan; Strotz, Chantal (2020). The politics of renewable energy production in a federalist context: The deployment of small hydropower in the Swiss cantons. Journal of environment & development, 29(1), pp. 75-98. Sage 10.1177/1070496519886005

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This article explores the factors that hinder and promote the deployment of renewable energy generating infrastructure in/across the Swiss cantons (i.e., the country’s federal units). Using the example of small-scale hydropower, we shed light on how political regulations at the cantonal level interact with national policies and the local political process to affect the deployment of renewable energy production. The analysis demonstrates that political regulations can both foster and hinder the deployment of renewable energy production. While the national feed-in tariff scheme is revealed to be a beneficial framework condition, cantonal regulations hamper, rather than facilitate, the deployment of small-scale hydropower. Moreover, inclusive local processes and the existence of local entrepreneurs seem to act as a trigger for the local acceptance of renewable energy generation infrastructure. More generally, we conclude that, quite independently of whether state structures are decentralized or centralized, subnational and local leeway in the definition and organization of projects can help to prevent or deal with local opposition.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

03 Faculty of Business, Economics and Social Sciences > Social Sciences > Institute of Political Science

UniBE Contributor:

Stadelmann, Isabelle

Subjects:

300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology > 320 Political science

ISSN:

1070-4965

Publisher:

Sage

Language:

English

Submitter:

Isabelle Stadelmann

Date Deposited:

05 Feb 2020 10:34

Last Modified:

06 Feb 2020 13:56

Publisher DOI:

10.1177/1070496519886005

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.139493

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/139493

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