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Top-down and bottom-up modelling techniques have been used to answer the question of how much would it cost to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. These two types of models, however, were conceived and designed through different disciplines, for different purposes and lead to very different conclusions. Recent attempts to compare the two modelling approaches illustrate the difficulty in reconciling their results. In this paper, both modelling techniques are described and discussed, and the gap between their results is explored.
In many ways, the mountain west (Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming) is an energy colony for the rest of the United States: it is rich in energy resources that are extracted to fuel economic growth in the wealthier and more populous coastal regions. Federal agencies and global corporations often behave as if the mountain west is a place to be exploited or managed for the benefit of customers and consumers elsewhere. Yet, the area. is not vast empty space with a limitless supply of natural resources, but rather a fast-growing region with a diverse economic base dependent on a limited supply of water. New decision processes and collaborations are slowly changing this situation,...
Energy, economics, and the environment are interdependent. Land, water, atmospheric, and biological resources #are being degraded by current high energy consumption. U.S. energy consumption is the highest in the world and the U.S. Department of Energy reports that the United States has only about 10 years of known and potentially 1,discoverable oil reserves. The U.S. should reduce its energy consumption by one half to help restore the quality of ithe environment while improving the American standard of living by strengthening the economy and increasing the Inumber of jobs. Because of the interdependence of energy, economics, and the environment, energy efficiency and 1:ransition to renewable energy sources are critical....
This factual and occasionally philosophical book examines the intimate relations between mankind and energy. The major goal of the volume is to provide readers with the knowledge necessary to make decisions on energy policies. The impact of energy throughout the history of man is traced. The present energy source options are described, as are the processes of energy conversion for human use, and methods to estimate future costs of energy sources. The conflicts of interest between conservationists and the power industry are discussed from a neutral perspective. Chapters are included on the following topics: Energy in Human History; How Mankind Uses Energy; Sources of Energy; Energy and Economics; New Fuels from Old...
The 165-km2 Altamont Pass Wind Resource Area (APWRA) in west-central California includes 5,400 wind turbines, each rated to generate between 40 kW and 400 kW of electric power, or 580 MW total. Many birds residing or passing through the area are killed by collisions with these wind turbines. We searched for bird carcasses within 50 m of 4,074 wind turbines for periods ranging from 6 months to 4.5 years. Using mortality estimates adjusted for searcher detection and scavenger removal rates, we estimated the annual wind turbine–caused bird fatalities to number 67 (80% CI = 25–109) golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos), 188 (80% CI = 116–259) red-tailed hawks (Buteo jamaicensis), 348 (80% CI = −49 to 749) American kestrels...
The 165-km2 Altamont Pass Wind Resource Area (APWRA) in west-central California includes 5,400 wind turbines, each rated to generate between 40 kW and 400 kW of electric power, or 580 MW total. Many birds residing or passing through the area are killed by collisions with these wind turbines. We searched for bird carcasses within 50 m of 4,074 wind turbines for periods ranging from 6 months to 4.5 years. Using mortality estimates adjusted for searcher detection and scavenger removal rates, we estimated the annual wind turbine–caused bird fatalities to number 67 (80% CI = 25–109) golden eagles (Aquila chrysaetos), 188 (80% CI = 116–259) red-tailed hawks (Buteo jamaicensis), 348 (80% CI = −49 to 749) American kestrels...
The increasing demand for bioenergy in the United States necessitates detailed case studies of cost and supply to assess its feasibility. We have developed supply curves based on six feedstocks in five counties surrounding the Yakama Nation in central Washington using spatially explicit estimates of supply and transportation cost. The supply curves were used to examine a base case supply for a bioenergy plant, to analyze the effects of land ownership, and examine the impacts of uncertainty in parameters used to determine cost and supply. The results show that existing industries produce the cheapest supply of feedstock as a byproduct of their operations, while supplies harvested specifically for bioenergy are considerably...
In many ways, the mountain west (Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming) is an energy colony for the rest of the United States: it is rich in energy resources that are extracted to fuel economic growth in the wealthier and more populous coastal regions. Federal agencies and global corporations often behave as if the mountain west is a place to be exploited or managed for the benefit of customers and consumers elsewhere. Yet, the area. is not vast empty space with a limitless supply of natural resources, but rather a fast-growing region with a diverse economic base dependent on a limited supply of water. New decision processes and collaborations are slowly changing this situation,...
In many ways, the mountain west (Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming) is an energy colony for the rest of the United States: it is rich in energy resources that are extracted to fuel economic growth in the wealthier and more populous coastal regions. Federal agencies and global corporations often behave as if the mountain west is a place to be exploited or managed for the benefit of customers and consumers elsewhere. Yet, the area. is not vast empty space with a limitless supply of natural resources, but rather a fast-growing region with a diverse economic base dependent on a limited supply of water. New decision processes and collaborations are slowly changing this situation,...
Corn ethanol produced in the US and sugarcane ethanol produced in Brazil are the world's leading sources of biofuel. Current US biofuel policies create both incentives and constraints for the import of ethanol from Brazil and together with the cost competitiveness and greenhouse gas intensity of sugarcane ethanol compared to corn ethanol will determine the extent of these imports. This study analyzes the supply-side determinants of cost competitiveness and compares the greenhouse gas intensity of corn ethanol and sugarcane ethanol delivered to US ports. We find that while the cost of sugarcane ethanol production in Brazil is lower than that of corn ethanol in the US, the inclusion of transportation costs for the...
As electricity demand increases, policymakers must make decisions about which energy resources will meet future demands. Much of the recent literature has focused on the contribution of new coal power plants to carbon emissions (Milford et al., 2005; Milford et al., 2007; MIT 2007). However, policymakers and industry are increasingly interested in job creation and economic development analyses to understand the full impacts of new electricity generation projects.1 Additionally, economic development impacts are often a critical piece in building public support for wind power projects. The purpose of this research is to look at the specific factors that drive wind-power-related economic development and to better understand...
In many ways, the mountain west (Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming) is an energy colony for the rest of the United States: it is rich in energy resources that are extracted to fuel economic growth in the wealthier and more populous coastal regions. Federal agencies and global corporations often behave as if the mountain west is a place to be exploited or managed for the benefit of customers and consumers elsewhere. Yet, the area. is not vast empty space with a limitless supply of natural resources, but rather a fast-growing region with a diverse economic base dependent on a limited supply of water. New decision processes and collaborations are slowly changing this situation,...
During the past three years, working with more than 150 organizations representing public and private stakeholders, EPRI has developed the Electricity Technology Roadmap. The Roadmap identifies several major strategic challenges that must be successfully addressed to ensure a sustainable future in which electricity continues to play an important role in economic growth. Articulation of these anticipated trends and challenges requires a detailed understanding of the role and importance of reliable electricity in different sectors of the economy. This report is intended to contribute to that understanding by analyzing key aspects of trends in the economic value of electricity reliability in the U.S. economy. We first...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Economics, Energy, Shell, Shell Energy
The timely development of the nation's energy production capacity in a manner that minimizes potential adverse local and regional impacts associated with energy facilities requires the use of sophisticated techniques for evaluation of siting alternatives and fuel cycle options. This report is a documentation of the computerized SITE methodology that has been developed for evaluating health, environmental, and socioeconomic impacts related to utilization of alternate sites for energy production within a region of interest. The cost, impact, and attribute vectors, which are generated and displayed on density maps, can be used in a multiparameter overlay process to identify preferable siting areas. The assessment of...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Economics, Energy, Shell, Shell Energy
Corn ethanol produced in the US and sugarcane ethanol produced in Brazil are the world's leading sources of biofuel. Current US biofuel policies create both incentives and constraints for the import of ethanol from Brazil and together with the cost competitiveness and greenhouse gas intensity of sugarcane ethanol compared to corn ethanol will determine the extent of these imports. This study analyzes the supply-side determinants of cost competitiveness and compares the greenhouse gas intensity of corn ethanol and sugarcane ethanol delivered to US ports. We find that while the cost of sugarcane ethanol production in Brazil is lower than that of corn ethanol in the US, the inclusion of transportation costs for the...
Compressed air energy storage (CAES) could be paired with a wind farm to provide firm, dispatchable baseload power, or serve as a peaking plant and capture upswings in electricity prices. We present a firm-level engineering-economic analysis of a wind/CAES system with a wind farm in central Texas, load in either Dallas or Houston, and a CAES plant whose location is profit-optimized. With 2008 hourly prices and load in Houston, the economically optimal CAES expander capacity is unrealistically large – 24 GW – and dispatches for only a few hours per week when prices are highest; a price cap and capacity payment likewise results in a large (17 GW) profit-maximizing CAES expander. Under all other scenarios considered...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: economics, energy, supply demand
Increasing demand for energy, diminishing stocks of oil and natural gas, and the public’s desire to enhance environmental quality, particularly by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, all point to the need for improved materials. For example, generating electricity from the most abundant fossil fuel, coal, efficiently and with no environmental damage, presents notable challenges to develop higher performance materials. Technologies exist to transform one fossil fuel to other uses, such as coal to a gas or liquid. New materials that increase the efficiency of the transformation and lower its cost would provide valuable flexibility. Materials should be evaluated in terms of their entire lifecycle in order to discern...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: economics, energy, supply demand
This paper presents an overview of the main issues associated with the economics of offshore wind. Investment in offshore wind systems has been growing rapidly throughout Europe, and the technology will be essential in meeting EU targets for renewable energy in 2020. Offshore wind suffers from high installation and connection costs, however, making government support essential. We review various support policies used in Europe, concluding that tender-based feed-in tariff schemes, as used in Denmark, may be best for providing adequate support while minimising developers' rents. It may prove economic to build an international offshore grid connecting wind farms belonging to different countries that are sited close...
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The Geology, Energy & Minerals Science Center (GEMSC) is a research center within the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) that conducts comprehensive, interdisciplinary research, assessments, and surveys of the origin, occurrence, distribution, quantity, composition, and environmental effects of geologic energy materials, minerals, associated deposits, and waste materials. Additionally, GEMSC scientists are working on a broad range of current and emerging geology, energy, and minerals issues including evaluating waters produced during oil and gas extraction; identifying wastes that can be recovered or repurposed and used in new processes; conducting studies and assessments of critical minerals and rare earth elements;...