Working Paper
Support policies for renewables

Instrument choice and instrument change from a Public Choice perspective

This paper frames the transition towards clean energies as a sequential process of instrument choice and instrument change. First, regulators decide how to initiate the transition away from fossil energies. Here, support policies for renewable electricity are politically convenient because they face low resistance from fossil energies’ interest groups. In the second stage, regulators need to adapt support policies for renewables to challenges arising along the transition pathway.

We empirically substantiate our arguments by tracing the development of support policies in Germany. Against the backdrop of this analysis, we point towards small-step policies that could foster the transition process.