The Legitimation of Solar Energy Uptake in Portugal
How is a particular trajectory of renewable energy roll-out legitimated? Who is held accountable by whom as energy systems evolve? Based on a study of the governance of solar energy uptake in Portugal, this talk considers various contingencies and their effect on energy justice outcomes of socio-technical change. It traces how discrete acts validate specific transition trajectories through discursive, bureaucratic, technocratic and financial practices of legitimation. A leader on wind and hydro power, Portugal’s 2019 solar auctions set a world record. With Europe’s best solar irradiation, has its big solar push finally kicked off?
This talk takes its point of departure in an edited volume titled ‘Enabling sustainable energy transitions: Practices of legitimation and accountable governance’. This book reframes sustainable energy transitions as being about resolving accountability crises. It demonstrates how the empirical study of several practices of legitimation can analytically deconstruct energy transitions. Open access book: https://www.palgrave.com/gp/book/9783030268909
Siddharth Sareen is a researcher at the Department of Geography, University of Bergen. He studies the governance of energy transitions. Having worked in seven countries, he has published on resource and energy governance in journals such as Applied Energy, Environmental Research Letters, Energy Research & Social Science and Journal of Development Studies. Notably, he has conducted fieldwork in six regions of India, and co-edited special issues of the Journal of South Asian Studies, Contemporary South Asia and Global Transitions. During autumn 2019, he is a Visiting Senior Research Fellow with the Sussex Energy Group. See https://www.uib.no/en/persons/Siddharth.Sareen