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Short Circuiting PolicyInterest Groups and the Battle Over Clean Energy and Climate Policy in the American States$
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Leah Cardamore Stokes

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780190074258

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190074258.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 09 December 2021

Policy Feedback Takes Hold

Policy Feedback Takes Hold

Networked Advocates Use the Public to Drive Clean Energy Leadership in Texas

(p.108) 4 Policy Feedback Takes Hold
Short Circuiting Policy

Leah Cardamore Stokes

Oxford University Press

Chapter 4 examines one of the earliest renewable energy laws in the United States: Texas’s renewable portfolio standard, enacted under then-governor George W. Bush in 1999. This chapter provides the early history of clean energy leadership in Texas, when wind energy grew rapidly. Relying on original archival research and primary interviews, it explains why Texas acted on clean energy before California and other more progressive states. It shows how savvy advocates used public opinion to drive policy change during windows of opportunity. More broadly, this case reveals a classic positive feedback dynamic: a growing wind energy sector increased its influence over the legislature and successfully expanded clean energy policy. Here, advocates relied on the fog of enactment to get a clean energy target and an ambitious infrastructure spending bill passed in the legislature. They also worked through the public to convince legislators that clean energy leadership was important for Texans.

Keywords:   Texas energy policy, energy politics, positive feedback, renewable portfolio standard, electricity transmission, wind energy policy, energy policy

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