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Conceptualizing Energy Security

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  • Winzer, C.

Abstract

Energy security is one of the main targets of energy policy. However, the term has not been clearly defined, which makes it hard to measure and difficult to balance against other policy objectives. We review the multitude of definitions of energy security. They can be characterized according to the sources of risk, the scope of the impacts, and the severity filters in the form of the speed, size, sustention, spread, singularity and sureness of impacts. Using a stylized case study for three European countries, we illustrate how the selection of conceptual boundaries along these dimensions determines the outcome. This can be avoided by more clearly separating between security of supply and other policy objectives. This leads us to the definition of energy security as the continuity of energy supplies relative to demand. If security is defined from the perspective of private utilities, end consumers or public servants, the concept could further be reduced to the continuity of specific commodity or service supplies, or the impact of supply discontinuities on the continuity of the economy.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge in its series Cambridge Working Papers in Economics with number 1151.

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Date of creation: 16 Aug 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cam:camdae:1151

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Cited by:
  1. Chuang, Ming Chih & Ma, Hwong Wen, 2013. "Energy security and improvements in the function of diversity indices—Taiwan energy supply structure case study," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 9-20.
  2. Marcus King & Jay Gulledge, 2014. "Climate change and energy security: an analysis of policy research," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 123(1), pages 57-68, March.
  3. Luise Röpke, 2013. "The Development of Renewable Energies and Supply Security: A Trade-Off Analysis," Ifo Working Paper Series Ifo Working Paper No. 151, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
  4. Jewell, Jessica & Cherp, Aleh & Riahi, Keywan, 2014. "Energy security under de-carbonization scenarios: An assessment framework and evaluation under different technology and policy choices," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 743-760.
  5. Noël, P. & Findlater, S. & Chyong, C. K., 2012. "The Cost of Improving Gas Supply Security in the Baltic States," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1204, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  6. Demski, Christina & Poortinga, Wouter & Pidgeon, Nick, 2014. "Exploring public perceptions of energy security risks in the UK," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 369-378.
  7. Cédric Clastres & Catherine Locatelli, 2012. "European Union energy security: the challenges of liberalisation in a risk-prone international environment Society," Post-Print halshs-00787123, HAL.
  8. Sander, Michael, 2013. "Conceptual proposals for measuring the impact of international regimes on energy security," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 449-457.
  9. Sharifuddin, Shahnaz, 2014. "Methodology for quantitatively assessing the energy security of Malaysia and other southeast Asian countries," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 574-582.
  10. Karen Pittel, 2012. "Das energiepolitische Zieldreieck und die Energiewende," Ifo Schnelldienst, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 65(12), pages 22-26, 06.
  11. Yudha Prambudia & Masaru Nakano, 2012. "Integrated Simulation Model for Energy Security Evaluation," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 5(12), pages 5086-5110, December.
  12. Catherine Locatelli, 2012. "Relations UE-Russie : les enjeux d'une nouvelle architecture gazière," Post-Print halshs-00755640, HAL.

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