Issue 7: Energy Equity
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. —Charles Dickens
Behind every headline of record-breaking development successes fueled by increased energy use, there are untold stories of imbalances in energy access. This issue of the Stanford Energy Journal sets out to explore potential technological and policy tools to improve energy equity, especially in low-income and developing communities.
A technological solution presented by Motiv Power’s Kim Kilday addresses the transportation sector—electric trucks and buses converted from existing fleet reach out to broader communities while cutting down emissions.
Synergetic interactions between economic development and climate change mitigation can also be achieved by effective policymaking, as discussed by World Bank economists Stéphane Hallegatte and Mook Bangalore.
Carnegie Science scholars Chris Field and Katharine Mach probe deeper into the link between energy use and environmental impact and argue for a shift in consumer values towards a more sustainable paradigm to improve access to energy, a shared resource.
Stepping out of academia and into the field, Stanford students Joe Katz, Savannah Goodman, and Hunter Dudley speak to fellow energy enthusiasts, sharing their experiences working in developing communities. Having witnessed firsthand how adoption of clean energy helped these communities, they share their candid insights into what worked and what needed improving.
There are also topics on energy equity that we would like to see in future issues in one form or another. One example would be vulnerability to climate change and adaptation (readers are directed to the 2012 IPCC Special Report for insightful discussions on this topic). Another would be how countries with more emissions-intensive resources can support development while meeting international climate targets.
There is a long road ahead towards energy equity. With concerted efforts from the government, industry, and academia, we will make small yet firm steps forward.