My research focuses on the consequences and origins of various local renewable energy conflicts. A growing number of local communities around the world are facing land-use conflicts surrounding renewable energy facilities, and they are creating barriers to the national clean energy transition. For instance, local renewable energy conflicts, if not properly resolved, can derail local renewable energy projects, translate into unfavorable electoral outcomes for clean energy transition policies, and contribute to the diffusion of policy barriers to renewable energy facilities. To understand these consequences, however, one must investigate why local renewable energy conflicts unfold in the first place. NIMBY (not-in-my-back-yard) explanation provides only a partial answer to why people oppose renewable energy facilities: Landscape and environmental issues, historical and cultural values of the area, place attachment, and power relations between relevant stakeholders matter depending on the local and national contexts. I’m particularly interested in renewable energy conflict cases in the Asian region which have been less studied compared to those in Western societies. Currently, I’m looking at how local conflicts surrounding photovoltaic (PV) power stations in South Korea have contributed to the diffusion of local regulations that prohibit citing PV power stations within a specific distance from households or roads, undermining national renewable energy expansion.
Advisor: Aseem Prakash – Political Science