Special Issue "Advances in Natural Resource Economics and Policy"

A special issue of Resources (ISSN 2079-9276).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 November 2019).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Rabindra Nepal
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Economics and Finance, Tasmanian School of Business and Economics, University of Tasmania, Hobart, TAS 7001, Australia
Interests: energy economics and policy; environmental economics and policy; development economics and policy; industrial organization of network industries; power sector reforms in developing economies

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The global energy sector is experiencing disruptions from increasing digitalisation, responsiveness in energy management, diversification of energy supply and demand, integration of distributed energy resources and changing regulation and policies. The pace of disruptions vary between developed and developing economies. The aim of this Special Issue is to capture these ongoing advances in global energy disruptions as economies continue their pursuit of the energy policy trilemma of affordability, sustainability and supply security. The overarching goal is to provide a compendium of lessons based on review and progress towards a changing global energy landscape as the transition to a low-carbon economy and the response to mitigating the threat of climate change ramps up. Scientific submissions of theoretical and empirical analyses on topics related to renewable energy development and integration, electric vehicles, smarter networks, power systems storage, Paris Agreement and economic growth in developing economies and energy sector transformation are particularly welcome. Submissions are expected to rely on economics as a primary analytical tool even though the studies are interdisciplinary with wider policy relevance to academics, policymakers and practioners.

 

Dr. Rabindra Nepal

Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Resources is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Renewable energy
  • Smart power networks
  • Electric vehicles
  • Energy Systems Integration
  • Climate change and economic growth nexus
  • Changing regulation
  • Energy Policy
  • Energy Economics

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

Article
Investigating the Impacts of Energy Access Scenarios in the Nigerian Household Sector by 2030
Resources 2019, 8(3), 127; https://doi.org/10.3390/resources8030127 - 18 Jul 2019
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 3173
Abstract
Lack of access to modern forms of energy continues to hamper socio-economic development in Nigeria, and about 94% and 39% of the Nigerian population do not have access to clean cooking equipment and electricity, respectively. The United Nations Sustainable Energy for All initiative [...] Read more.
Lack of access to modern forms of energy continues to hamper socio-economic development in Nigeria, and about 94% and 39% of the Nigerian population do not have access to clean cooking equipment and electricity, respectively. The United Nations Sustainable Energy for All initiative and Sustainable Development Goal number seven seek to provide universal modern energy for all by 2030. However, the implications of these global goals on Nigeria’s energy system have not been well researched in the literature. In this study, we applied the Long-Range Energy Alternatives Planning Systems model to analyse the impacts of different energy access scenarios by 2030 on household energy consumption, CO2 emissions and local air pollutant emissions. We also analysed different scenarios for biomass renewability in order to understand its impact on household net CO2 emissions. We found that achieving a 100% modern energy access by 2030 would reduce final energy demand by around 845 PJ, which is equivalent to a 52.4% reduction when compared to the baseline scenario. A 100% modern access would also significantly reduce local air pollutants, but increase CO2 emissions significantly by 16.7 MtCO2 compared to the baseline scenario. Our analysis shows that the benefits of modern energy access have been limited in Nigeria due to poor financing and low income levels of households. Therefore, we argue that for a 100% modern energy access in Nigeria by 2030, there is a need to explore local and foreign funding sources, and a serious need to couple energy access programs in the country with income-generating activities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Natural Resource Economics and Policy)
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Article
Through the Blurry Looking Glass—SDGs in the GRI Reports
Resources 2019, 8(2), 101; https://doi.org/10.3390/resources8020101 - 28 May 2019
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 3202
Abstract
“Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” was agreed upon in 2015 by the global community and proposes 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) for the period between 2015 and 2030. Since the greater integration of goals was an explicit claim, there [...] Read more.
“Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” was agreed upon in 2015 by the global community and proposes 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) for the period between 2015 and 2030. Since the greater integration of goals was an explicit claim, there are numerous overlaps among them. One of the novelties of the SDGs is that, in order to achieve the set goals, the Agenda 2030 addresses not only the states but the businesses as well. In our study, the relationships between the SDGs were analyzed on the base of the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) indicators linked to the goals. The analysis was carried out by cluster analysis. Our results indicate that there is a strong relationship to be found among nine of the 17 SDGs. That relationship is mainly technical, which is caused by the number of aligned (genuine) GRI indicators. Though there are relationships between the SDGs as well, their strength is much weaker. According to our classification of SDGs, we suggest that the gap of business attention among SDGs is smaller than it is showed by KPMG. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Natural Resource Economics and Policy)
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Article
Energy Utilization Potential of Wheat Straw in an Ecological Balance—A Case Study of Henan Province in China
Resources 2019, 8(1), 41; https://doi.org/10.3390/resources8010041 - 22 Feb 2019
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2148
Abstract
Minimum volume of straw should be retained in collecting wheat straw in order to obtain sustainable agricultural biomass energy and measure the energy utilization potential of wheat straw when considering ecological balance. Based on relevant literature, this paper calculates the minimum, medium, and [...] Read more.
Minimum volume of straw should be retained in collecting wheat straw in order to obtain sustainable agricultural biomass energy and measure the energy utilization potential of wheat straw when considering ecological balance. Based on relevant literature, this paper calculates the minimum, medium, and maximum volume of wheat straw retention in various types of soil and designs three different scenarios of minimum, medium, and maximum wheat straw retention. Taking Henan province in China as a case, this paper calculates the potential of wheat straw for energy utilization using linear regression method and scenario analysis, with consideration of influencing factors such as the harvest coefficient and combustion ratio of wheat straw. The results show that the energy utilization potential of wheat straw in Henan province in 2020, 2030, 2050 are 13.77, 16.48, 22.54 million tons of coal equivalent (TCEs), respectively, in the minimum retention scenario, assuming that wheat straw is not directly used for combustion. Excessive straw left in the field causes resource waste and produces CH4 and other greenhouse gases. This paper finds that energy potential of wheat straw for energy utilization is limited when ecological balance is considered, however, it is beneficial to the sustainable development of crop biomass energy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Natural Resource Economics and Policy)
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Article
Exploring the Policy Implications of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act
Resources 2019, 8(1), 25; https://doi.org/10.3390/resources8010025 - 25 Jan 2019
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2432
Abstract
This paper explores how policy structure, institutions, and political climate impact the ability of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA) to ensure the reclamation of surface coal mines. We conduct a policy review that traces the impacts of the three parts [...] Read more.
This paper explores how policy structure, institutions, and political climate impact the ability of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA) to ensure the reclamation of surface coal mines. We conduct a policy review that traces the impacts of the three parts of SMCRA; Reclamation Standards, Reclamation Bonding Requirements, and the Abandoned Mine Land fund. We examine the implications the act and its approach have for the mining industry and their ability to reclaim mining areas. We find that each of the three parts of SMCRA’s approach face substantial problems in their implementation. Though largely a positive force for internalizing the environmental costs of surface mining, those issues commonly elucidated in the public choice literature reduce the efficacy of the policy approach and call into question the act’s ability to ensure reclamation occurs. Both in the structure of the bonding requirements and in the regulatory structure created by the act, misaligned incentives sometimes hamper effective reclamation. Further, the funds created under SMCRA to reclaim and restore mined lands have often been directed towards projects that are politically expedient for politicians instead of those that would best serve the fund’s original reclamation purpose. After revealing these problems and putting them in the context of the public choice literature, we suggest updates to the current policy that would align reclamation incentives and better ensure that the reclamation of surface mines occurs. We emphasize the cooperative elements of SMCRA and suggest how other countries, especially those without major existing frameworks for handling reclamation, can emulate the successes of SMCRA while avoiding its implementations snags. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Natural Resource Economics and Policy)
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Article
The Relationship of Causal Factors Affecting the Future Equilibrium Change of Total Final Energy Consumption in Thailand’s Construction Sector under a Sustainable Development Goal: Enriching the SE-VARX Model
Resources 2019, 8(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/resources8010001 - 20 Dec 2018
Viewed by 1809
Abstract
This study aims to analyze the influence of the relationship between causal factors that affect the future equilibrium of the total final energy consumption in the construction sector of Thailand under the sustainable development policy for the period of 10 years (2019–2028). This [...] Read more.
This study aims to analyze the influence of the relationship between causal factors that affect the future equilibrium of the total final energy consumption in the construction sector of Thailand under the sustainable development policy for the period of 10 years (2019–2028). This analysis was achieved with the application of the Structure Equilibrium-Vector Autoregressive with Exogenous Variables model (SE-VARX model). This model was developed to fill research gaps and differs from those of previous studies. In the selection of variables, the study focused on Sustainable Development (SD)-based variables available through the lens of Thailand. The exogenous variables included real GDP, population growth, urbanization rate, industrial structure, oil price, foreign direct investment, international tourist arrivals, and total exports and imports. Every variable had a co-integration at level (1) and was used to structure the SE-VARX model. This particular model can effectively analyze the influence of the direct relationship and meet the criteria of goodness of fit without spuriousness. This SE-VARX model allowed us to discover that every variable in the model had an influence on the equilibrium change, where the real GDP is the fastest variable to adjust to the equilibrium while the total final energy consumption has the slowest adjustment ability. The SE-VARX model can be used to project the total final energy consumption, as verified by the performance test result. The test was measured based on the Mean Absolute Percentage Error (MAPE) and Root Mean Square Error (RMSE), and their results were 1.09% and 1.01%, respectively. This performance result had the highest value compared to other models in the past. Thus, the SE-VARX model is suitable for forecasting over the next 10 years (2019–2038). The results of this study reveal that the total final energy consumption in the construction sector of Thailand will exhibit a continuously increasing growth rate from 2019 to 2028, amounting to about 144.29% or equivalent to 364.01 ktoe. In addition, the study also found that future government plans may be difficult to achieve as planned. Therefore, the introduced model should be integrated into national development planning and strategies to achieve sustainable development in the future and to enable its application to other sectors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Natural Resource Economics and Policy)
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Article
A Relationship of Causal Factors in the Economic, Social, and Environmental Aspects Affecting the Implementation of Sustainability Policy in Thailand: Enriching the Path Analysis Based on a GMM Model
Resources 2018, 7(4), 87; https://doi.org/10.3390/resources7040087 - 18 Dec 2018
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2100
Abstract
This research aimed to analyze the influence of the direct and indirect relationships of economic, social, and environmental factors as well as predict their future effects by applying a path analysis of a generalized method of moments model (path analysis–GMM model). The model [...] Read more.
This research aimed to analyze the influence of the direct and indirect relationships of economic, social, and environmental factors as well as predict their future effects by applying a path analysis of a generalized method of moments model (path analysis–GMM model). The model is believed to be the most effective in relationship analysis, as it is capable of accurate prediction compared to the original models. Most importantly, the model can be applied to different contexts, benefiting the development areas of those contexts. Furthermore, the model has also been found to be the best linear unbiased estimation (BLUE), which is suitable for long-term forecasting. However, the study’s results reflect that the three latent variables of economic, social, and environmental factors have direct and indirect effects. In addition, both economic and social factors were found to have causal relationships. The availability of the path analysis–GMM model enables us to forecast the social and economic changes over the next 20 years (2019–2038), and predict the change in energy-related CO2 emissions for the next 20 years (2019–2038). Thus, the study was able to discern the economic and social growth of Thailand. Studies have shown that the economic and social growth of Thailand has increased by 7.85%, based on various indicators. The economic indicators include per capita gross domestic product ( G D P ) , urbanization rate ( U R E ) , industrial structure ( I S E ) , net exports ( X E ) , and indirect foreign investment ( I F I ) , while the social indicators include employment ( E M S ) , health and illness ( H I S ) , social security ( SSS ) , and consumer protection ( CPS ) . However, the environment has continuously deteriorated, as understood via environmental indicators such as energy consumption ( E C E ) , energy intensity ( E I E ) , and carbon dioxide emissions ( C O 2 ) . This is due to the increment of CO2 emissions in energy consumption of 39.37% (2038/2019) or 103.37 Mt CO2 eq. by 2038. However, by using the path analysis–GMM model to test for performance, it produced the mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) of 1.01% and a root mean square error (RMSE) of 1.25%. A comparison of the above results with other models, including the multiple regression model, grey model, artificial neural natural model (ANN model), back propagation neural network (BP model), and the autoregressive integrated moving average model (ARIMA model) provided evidence that the path analysis–GMM model was the most suitable in forecasting and contextual application to support the formulation of the national strategy in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Natural Resource Economics and Policy)
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