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NW Energy Policy Syllabus, Resources & Readings


We have provided the 2014 syllabus for your reference. Please take a look!

Course Design

The first half of the course addresses the origins, history institutional context of NW energy policy.

To a remarkable extent, today’s decisions about energy policy in the Northwest are rooted in and influenced by a set of regional “deals” and institutions that emerged in 20-30 year cycles over the last century.  Each of these deals were consummated in formal laws, agreements, and rules, but they also included less formal institutional ingredients that came out of the particular era in which the deal was made. These less formal elements included ideas, values, images, and perceptions of what was an acceptable problem for public policy, and what the appropriate public and private sector roles might be in addressing these problems.  In short, each of these deals reflected the values, ideas, institutions, and policies of the era in which they emerged.  

While each successive deal significantly altered the earlier ones, it would be a mistake to assume that the earlier deals disappeared or are no longer significant. A more helpful analogy would be to view each regional deal as an “overlay” that has been placed over but has not fully replaced its predecessors.  If we want to really understand the opportunities and barriers that the Northwest energy community now faces, we must first understand the region’s earlier energy policy deals and their implications.  The most successful Northwest energy policy makers and advisors are those who have learned the art of recognizing and navigating through the remaining active components of each deal overlay.

The second half of the course is focused on exploring specific "hot" policy topics

Topics will be selected by the class during the first half of the course, but you can view a number of likely candidates. A stellar group of energy policy makers and analysts will join the class to give us their perspective on these topics - the insider's view. Final decisions on the guest speakers we will invite to join us will be depend on the policy topics we select. Check out the list of past speakers!

Course Readings for Spring 2014

  • Jeff Hammarlund (ed), Energy Resources Policy and Administration Class Reader, 2014
    • Available from REDePrintNShop, 1915 SW Sixth Avenue, on campus, 503-227-6137;, beginning March 28. Best to call or email at least an hour before you arrive to ensure that a copy has been made and set aside for you.
  • Jeff Hammarlund (ed.), Northwest Electricity Issue of Oregon’s Future Journal, Spring, 2002.
    • Distributed in class - $3.
  • Amory Lovins and the Rocky Mountain Institute, Reinventing Fire: Bold New Business Solution for the New Energy Era, 2011.
    • Available at PSU Bookstore and on-line booksellers.
  • Daniel Ogden, Jr., The Development of Federal Power Policy in the Pacific Northwest, (selected chapters from 1949 Ph.D. dissertation)
    • Distributed in class at cost
  • Public Power Council, Public Power Chronicle, 2002.
  • Bob Shively and John Ferrare, Understanding Today’s Electricity Business, 2012. 
  • Additional readings will be provided as handouts, email attachments, posting on our on-line course website (D2L), and through web links throughout the quarter.