A widely accepted premise regarding wind power development policy is that implementation of economic policy instruments, which are designed to close the cost gap between wind power and entrenched fossil fuel power generation technologies, will significantly catalyze enhanced levels of wind power development activity. This paper contests this premise by arguing that non-economic barriers to wind power development have the capacity to significantly inhibit wind power development in industrialized nations despite the implementation of economic policy instruments. Forces which deter wind power development in four economically advanced economies that exhibit phlegmatic progress in wind power development - Australia, Canada, Japan and Taiwan - are identified and amalgamated into a STEP framework describing social, technical, economic and political forces that inhibit wind power development. The conclusions of this analysis are twofold. First, failure to mitigate these STEP forces may undermine the efficacy of any given economic policy instrument that aims to close the cost gap between wind power and entrenched generation technologies. Second, attempts to mitigate these impediments might represent a way to achieve better policy results with less government financial commitment.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment