Former U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman, LLB ’68, is back on Stanford Law School’s campus as a distinguished fellow at the Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and Finance. During the one-year appointment Bingaman will work with the center to develop policies to assist states and local communities in promoting increased use of clean energy. Currently, 29 states plus the District of Columbia have adopted policies to promote increased generation of electricity from renewable energy sources in the form of Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS). Seven other states have adopted voluntary goals for generation of electricity from renewable sources. Bingaman’s efforts will focus on actions that could be taken to extend and update those policies.
Bingaman retired from the Senate in 2013 after representing New Mexico for 30 years. During his tenure, he served as chair of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee and on the Senate Finance Committee as well as the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. While in office, he was the lead champion of the Clean Energy Standard Act of 2012, which would have required greater use of low-carbon energy sources.
“Senator Bingaman will bring unparalleled policy and finance experience to the work of the center at a moment when energy is on the national and international agenda like never before,” says Dan Reicher, JD ’83, executive director of the Steyer-Taylor Center and professor of the practice of law.
At the center, Bingaman will collaborate with the Environmental Law Clinic within the Mills Legal Clinic, which provides law students with hands-on experience in policy work on environmental and energy issues and in client representation. In addition, the former senator’s work will provide research opportunities for law students and business school students. He will also collaborate with energy scholars throughout campus, including at Stanford’s Precourt Institute for Energy. The fellowship is made possible by a grant from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.