The ‘justice’ in energy justice

What makes something an ‘energy injustice’? Where does the energy justice approach stem from? How can we operationalise and measure energy justice?

Fair Energy members have looked at these questions from a variety of angles:

Bombaerts et al. (2023) look to provide structure to the popular three-tenet approach to energy justice, introducing Schwartz’s core value theory as a means of conceptualising and resolving value disputes, that the current tenet approach cannot yet resolve.

Wood (2023) takes a more critical stance, exploring energy justice’s divergence from earlier environmental justice theories and movements that also consisted of justice as distribution, recognition, and procedure. Wood explores the explanatory and normative power that has been lost in the jump to energy justice and how such insights can be recovered to reconcile ethical-normative contradictions in predominant energy justice frameworks.

Laes et al. (2023) also respond to the ‘normative gap’ in energy justice and draw on the  ‘commonwealth model’ of Luc Boltanski and Laurent Thévenot to provide a more robust philosophical grounding through which to broaden the focus of energy justice and enable the navigation of conflicting claims to justice.

Beyond normative questions, Bal et al., (2023) explore argue that individual-level perception measures are insufficiently developed within the broader field of energy justice. Reviewing studies on how people (citizens, users or consumers) perceive fairness in the context of the energy transition, they investigate how fairness perceptions are currently studied within energy social science and how  interdependent decision-experiments can be used to map potential extensions of fairness conceptualizations and measures.

Check out the papers here:

Bombaerts, Gunter, Andreas Spahn, and Erik Laes. ‘Structuring Values and Normative Frameworks Using Schwartz’s Value Theory to Map the Three Tenets of Energy Justice’. Energy Research & Social Science 104 (1 October 2023): 103244.

Laes, Erik, Gunter Bombaerts, and Andreas Spahn. ‘Towards a Pragmatic and Pluralist Framework for Energy Justice’. Philosophy & Technology 36, no. 3 (31 July 2023): 53.

Wood, Nathan. ‘Problematising Energy Justice: Towards Conceptual and Normative Alignment’. Energy Research & Social Science 97 (1 March 2023): 102993.

Bal, Michèlle, Marijn Stok, Gunter Bombaerts, Nicole Huijts, Philipp Schneider, Andreas Spahn, and Vincent Buskens. ‘A Fairway to Fairness: Toward a Richer Conceptualization of Fairness Perceptions for Just Energy Transitions’. Energy Research & Social Science 103 (1 September 2023): 103213.