Posts by David B. Spence

David Spence is a Professor of Law, Politics & Regulation at The University of Texas at Austin, where he teaches in both the McCombs School of Business and the School of Law.

Electricity, Fossil Fuels and the Trump Administration

Most prognosticators thinking about energy policy in a Trump Administration foresee a reversal of the Obama Administration’s efforts to combat climate change, as well as a series of other regulatory and legislative adjustments designed to favor fossil fuels and disfavor renewables in energy markets. (Ann Carlson, for example, has an excellent post on the transition… Full Story

Electricity Markets $64,000 Question

Each summer, I have the good fortune of being able to teach a class in Edinburgh, Scotland, where I am as I write this.  Today, I turned on the BBC equivalent of C-SPAN to find the UK Energy Minister, Andrea Leadsom, testifying before a parliamentary committee about the very same question that plagues American electricity… Full Story

Looking Ahead at State-Local Conflicts Over Fracking

A recent UT Energy Center Law Blog post by Samantha Blons focused on a case brought by a natural gas producer against the City of Dallas, after the city denied the company a natural gas production permit.  (A new city ordinance restricts production within the city limits.)  The Dallas case is an early example of… Full Story

The Administration Goes It Alone on Energy Policy

In his State of the Union address, President Obama pledged to move forward on important policy problems with or without Congress.  Since then he has issued an executive order directing the federal government to purchase more renewable electricity, and has directed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to tighten mileage standards on heavy-duty trucks.  And the… Full Story

Pemex Finally Enters the Modern World?

In the Palacio Nacional in Mexico City there is a mural by the artist Diego Rivera, chronicling a history of the exploitation of Mexico by outsiders – first the conquistadors, and more recently, foreign mining and oil companies, among others.  Yet now, despite Mexicans’ deeply ingrained cultural sense of exploitation by investor-owned oil companies (IOCs),… Full Story