Article from: OGEL 3 (2018), in Editorial
Energy markets are inherently international. Oil markets are the obvious example of this. Actors, markets and most other elements of this segment of the energy world are all international in scope. But the same is becoming for natural gas. With increasing volumes of LNG coming from many areas of the world, the natural gas market has moved from national or regional to international. It is on its way to coming global. Other areas like renewable energy are usually thought as being national. They are not. There are many areas in which renewable energy markets are international. Investments in this area are international, just consider the many international investment law disputes in Europe. Investors in these cases are international investors. WTO disputes in renewable energy point to the same conclusion. What is more, in designing national regulatory and support instruments for renewable energy, countries look to other examples and through a careful comparative approach they then design their own regulatory scheme. Therefore, renewable energy markets are international. And international law and international energy law is relevant for these market as well as all other energy markets.
As noted by the late Professor Wälde, over the past few decades, energy trade has transcended national borders. With privatization, restructuring, the emergence of competitive markets, cross-border energy trade and regional integration, energy trade has become international in nature. This transformation has not occurred without having had an impact on regulatory models and governance structures for various parts of the energy value chain, from exploration and production to international transport and downstream energy markets. The internationalization of energy markets has consequences for the regulation of these markets. International markets call for international regulation. Separate national regimes are not enough.
The objective of this OGEL special issue on "International energy markets" is provide those not so familiar with energy law and international energy law a source of basic knowledge. The intention is not to cover all aspects of international energy law but rather to provide a solid foundation to build further knowledge on. The idea behind this special issue is to provide information and material for students enrolled in energy law or international energy law classes in various universities across the globe. However, it is also a source of information for lawyers and non-lawyers that have the opportunity to work in this area without much background.
The special issue provides an overview of legal and regulatory issues affecting all parts of the energy value chain, from upstream to downstream. It also shows how various areas of international law impacts energy markets and energy market actors. As such, it provides a comprehensive overview of what "international energy law" is.
Kim Talus and Raphael Heffron.