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Handbook of Energy by Christopher G. Morris, Cutler J. Cleveland

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Section 51

Policy

The subject area Policy deals with actions taken by a government or other entity to regulate or affect the use of energy in some way. This can include such measures as environmental protection laws, air pollution controls, taxes on energy consumption, safety regulations, efficiency and performance standards, incentives and subsidies for production, and bans on certain substances (e.g., leaded gasoline).

The first energy source to be regulated systematically was coal. As early as medieval times England placed various restrictions on the burning of coal and also began to tax coal consumption. What was not regulated, however, was the condition of workers in coal mines, who in some cases labored in virtual slavery. It was not until ...

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