This article, from the Energy Information Agency, is written by Erin Boedecker, Kelly Perl, John Maples, and Gwen Bredehoeft
Two alternative cases are discussed in this section to provide insight into the sensitivity of the Reference case to scenarios, in which existing tax credits that have sunset dates are assumed not to sunset (No Sunset case), or other policies (i.e., CAFE standards, appliance standards, and building codes) are expanded beyond current provisions in combination with the elimination of the sunset dates on existing tax credits (Extended Policies case). No attempt is made to cover the full range of possible uncertainties in these areas, and readers should not view the cases discussed as EIA projections of how laws or regulations are likely to, or should, be changed. The cases examined here look only at federal laws or regulations and do not examine state laws or regulations.
The No Sunset and Extended Polices cases generally lead to lower estimates for overall delivered energy consumption, increased use of renewable fuels (particularly for electricity generation), reduced energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, lower energy prices, and lower government tax revenues.
The AEO2014 Reference case is best described as a current laws and regulations case, because it generally assumes that existing laws and regulations remain unchanged throughout the projection period unless the legislation establishing the regulations sets a sunset date or specifies how they will change. The Reference case often serves as a starting point for analysis of proposed changes in legislation or regulations. While this definition of the Reference case supports a variety of further analysis, there may be interest in alternative cases that reflect updates or extensions of current laws and regulations that the AEO2014 Reference case excludes. Areas of particular interest include:
- Laws or regulations that have a history of being extended beyond their legislated sunset dates. Examples include the various tax credits for renewable fuels and technologies, which have been extended with or without modifications several times since their initial implementation.
The rest of EIA analysis is here: