The Impact of Brexit on the UK and Devolved Energy System
||Cairney, P., Munro, F., McHarg, A., McEwen, N., Turner, K. and Katris, A. The Impact of Brexit on the UK and Devolved Energy System. 2019. |
||Cairney, P., Munro, F., McHarg, A., McEwen, N., Turner, K. and Katris, A.|
|UKERC Report Number
This briefing paper uses the example of a changing UK/Scottish government relationship after Brexit to demonstratehow to analyse the role of politics and policymaking in the transformation of energy systems.
Brexit will create a new division of policymaking responsibilities between EU, UK, and devolved governments.
In this paper we divide energy policy competences according to levels of government. Initially, it suggests that we cangenerate a clear picture of multi-level policymaking. However, the formal allocation of competences only tells a partialstory, because actual powers may operate differently from the strict legal picture. These blurry boundaries betweenresponsibilities may be further complicated by Brexit, even if it looks like the removal of a layer of government willsimplify matters.Instead of imagining clearlines of accountability,think of energy policy as part of a complex policymaking system in which the link between powers, practices, and outcomes is unclear and an energy system, in which government isonly one of many influences on outcomes.
- Brexit could have a major impact on UK energy policymaking, but its likely effect remains unclear.
- We can predict major changes to formal policymaking responsibilities. There is less certainty of the policies that may
arise from EU, UK, and devolved governments.
- The law is only one aspect of policy, and policy is only one influence on energy system outcomes.
- Systems thinking helps inform discussions of, for example, the impact of Brexit on the transition to a low carbon
- However, terms suchas energy systems will only be useful when researchers and practitioners clarify their meaning and identify the role of policy in their transition.