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This book investigates how state laws and institutions may contribute to global warming. The hypothesis generally forwarded here is that state laws and institutions can have an enormous impact on the carbon dioxide emissions resulting from a state”s energy generation decisions. Public service commissions have an immense amount of power over the generation decisions of electric utilities. However, this power is not always equal among PUCs, nor always used in the same manner throughout the United States. State laws and institutions provide the basis from which public utility commissions regulate electricity generation in ways that inadvertently affect climate change. Therefore, differences in these laws and institutions can and do impact each state”s contribution to the amount of carbon dioxide emitted annually. Three separate studies are used to investigate the importance of laws and institutions in shaping a state”s carbon emissions profile. The research findings indicate that some state laws and institutions have made a significant difference in halting states” carbon dioxide emissions, and without a doubt political determinants play a role in a state”s emissions profile.


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