Energy policy

Latest Research and Reviews

  • Reviews |

    Three years of investigation by a multi-disciplinary team into claims of ‘cold fusion’ found no evidence that the phenomenon exists, but identified a parameter space potentially worthy of further exploration.

    • Curtis P. Berlinguette
    • , Yet-Ming Chiang
    • , Jeremy N. Munday
    • , Thomas Schenkel
    • , David K. Fork
    • , Ross Koningstein
    •  & Matthew D. Trevithick
    Nature 570, 45-51
  • Research |

    The Beijing Municipality has implemented a programme that subsidizes electric heat pumps and electricity, and bans coal. This study estimates the programme’s impact on household energy use and expenditure, well-being and indoor environment quality.

    • Christopher Barrington-Leigh
    • , Jill Baumgartner
    • , Ellison Carter
    • , Brian E. Robinson
    • , Shu Tao
    •  & Yuanxun Zhang
    Nature Energy 4, 416-423
  • Research | | open

    It is important to examine the economic viability of battery storage investments. Here the authors introduced the Levelized Cost of Energy Storage metric to estimate the breakeven cost for energy storage and found that behind-the-meter storage installations will be financially advantageous in both Germany and California.

    • Stephen Comello
    •  & Stefan Reichelstein
  • Reviews |

    Domestic heating systems vary widely in their configurations across different countries. Here, Gross and Hanna use case studies of Sweden and the United Kingdom to explore the central roles of policies and path dependence in shaping the technologies and infrastructures providing domestic space heating.

    • Robert Gross
    •  & Richard Hanna
    Nature Energy 4, 358-364
  • Research |

    Modelling the network of power plants that supply a given city, and the amount of energy drawn from each plant, shows a city’s energy mix and demonstrates which other cities it shares most energy suppliers with.

    • Christopher R. DeRolph
    • , Ryan A. McManamay
    • , April M. Morton
    •  & Sujithkumar Surendran Nair
  • Research |

    Carbon capture and storage can help reduce fossil-fuel power-plant emissions. Here the authors show that the energy return on input of thermal plants with carbon capture is in general lower than the energy return of most types of renewable energy even when combined with energy storage.

    • Sgouris Sgouridis
    • , Michael Carbajales-Dale
    • , Denes Csala
    • , Matteo Chiesa
    •  & Ugo Bardi
    Nature Energy 4, 456-465

News and Comment

  • Editorial |

    Coal is increasingly falling out of favour in the face of cheaper alternatives and concerns about health.

    Nature Energy 4, 429
  • News and Views |

    Policies that encourage a shift away from solid fuels can improve public health, welfare and the environment. However, impacts and their distribution are rarely evaluated. Now research shows that benefits to home comfort, indoor air quality and well-being from China’s coal-to-electricity programme vary across rich and poor districts.

    • Shonali Pachauri
    Nature Energy 4, 356-357
  • Comments and Opinion |

    New scientific findings cataloguing the need for a rapid renewable energy transition are most often met with calls for innovation. Our failure to address climate change and thereby avoid the socioeconomic crises it foretells will not be attributed to a lack of innovation, however, but rather to a lack of exnovation.

    • Debra J. Davidson
    Nature Energy 4, 254-256
  • News and Views |

    Many governments use finance mechanisms to deliver energy efficiency retrofits, but there is little understanding as to what makes them effective in stimulating private investment. New research now proposes a typology of finance mechanisms that policymakers can use as a toolkit to guide policy design.

    • Peter Mallaburn
    Nature Energy 4, 267-268
  • News and Views |

    In the face of climate change, the transition to a low-carbon energy system has become increasingly urgent. However, the implementation of renewable energy projects is often contested. Now research shows that residents of wind energy communities prefer their local wind project over other means of electricity generation.

    • Marco Sonnberger
    Nature Energy 4, 265-266