Roundtable: Energy Access, Energy Justice, and Research-Practice-Policy Connections
(Natural Resource, Energy, and Environmental Policy)

Thursday, November 7, 2019: 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Plaza Building: Concourse Level, Plaza Court 3 (Sheraton Denver Downtown)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Organizer:  Sanya Carley, Indiana University
Moderator:  Elizabeth J. Wilson, Dartmouth College
Speakers:  Sanya Carley, Indiana University, Jennie Stephens, Northeastern University, Varun Rai, University of Texas, Austin and Anna Ebers Broughel, Tetra Tech

The world is undergoing energy transitions toward low-carbon energy resources. These transitions have the potential to generate important benefits such as improved environmental conditions, and new innovation and economic development opportunities. However, these transitions may also have adverse consequences for some populations, particularly low-income communities, communities of color, and communities that rely heavily on employment in legacy energy industries (e.g., coal mining communities). These communities may be disadvantaged by energy transitions in several ways—they either receive a disproportionate share of the costs of the transitions, cannot access the benefits, or both.

This roundtable will focus on the implications of these trends, and address the twined questions related to energy access and energy justice in the contexts of energy transitions. The objective to identify important research-practice-policy connections within this space. The roundtable participants represent a mix of scholars who are actively engaged in research and/or practice about energy justice and energy access, and represent a diversity of perspectives on the topic. Example questions that will be posed include the following:

  • What is energy justice/democracy? How to combine/reconcile terms?
  • What are the major issues with low-income communities and energy? How to extend tech access to low-income communities, especially solar?
  • What are the major research Qs that are still unanswered?
  • What is funded/fundable within this space? Who is supporting this type of scholarship and engagement?
  • What are the research-practice-policy connections within this space?
  • How to teach energy justice within the contexts of energy transitions?
  • How can our work as energy researchers and energy educators contribute to change?  
  • What is our role in higher education and how can we be more intentional and impactful in how we engage?  

This rountable is one of two submissions on the topic of energy justice, and will be paired well at the conference with the other research paper panel.