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Energy-Climate: Resources

Page history last edited by editor 8 years, 4 months ago

Videos and Resources on Climate Change and Energy:




Energy and climate change

Power Surge: Clean energy revolution | NOVA

Are we finally on the brink of a clean energy revolution? Aired April 20, 2011 on PBS

Full Video: http://video.pbs.org/video/1873639434#




1) Wedge Approach to Climate Change:

Pacala & Socolow PaperIntro 

- By Princeton professors Rob Socolow and Stephen Pacala

To stabilize emissions in the next 50 years, the world must reduce emissions by about 7 gigatons of carbon (not carbon dioxide) compared to “business as usual” scenarios. So Socolow and Pacala identify 15 stabilization wedges that, if deployed at a significant global scale, could concievably reduce emissions by 1 gigaton each.

- So we need to cap it at a level of stabilization. The triangular area in between a) the current trend-line (upward diagonal line) and b) the horizontal stabilization line represents what we need to cut down through the use of better technology, divided into the following 4 approaches:

1) Increased Efficiency - increase the fuel efficiency of the cars (mgp)

2) Tripling the no. of nuclear power plants

3) Cleaning coal plants

4) Harnessing the power of the sun/wind


2) Carbon Capture

2.1 From atmosphere

- Klaus Lackner, Columbia university

- raisin based material that attracts CO2

- it will capture CO2 (just like in submarines)


2.2 From oil plant back into the ground

- pressurized CO2 is injected deep into the ground

- very expensive; no commercial motivation to do it

- ex: Insalla Plan

     Carbon Footprint

     American family footprint:

  • driving: 2 tons/year/family
  • other: 6 tons/year/family


3) Solar Power

- Challenge is how to make solar power cheaply!

- China leads the world in manufacturing

  • SunTech is the leader (Zhengrong Shi)
  • China Solar Valley: Huang Ming - design a community w/ 80% solar reliant

- US is also spending 40 billion for clean energy development (Stephen Chu - Dept of Energy)


4) Transportation 

Fuel Cell


- Keasling; uses Switch grass; yeast is bio-engineered to produce diesel fuel; But very expensive

- Sugar made by plants + mix with yeast -- fermentation --> Diesel fuel 


5) Efficiency Increasing

  • Finding leaks using thermo-camera
  • Motion sensors to shut off light
  • Energy bill reduced by 1.5 million dollar @ National Archive Center
  • Increase Home efficiency
  • Increase efficiency of cars


6) Nuclear Power plant


  • How to make them safe 
    • new designs to make sure nuclear disaster that happened in Fukusima doesn't occur again 
  • How to dispose nuclear waste?
    • use nuclear fuel more efficiently to produce energy 



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