Californian Nuclear Revival? A French Company Rolls the Dice

January, 2010
New York Times

Dan Kammen comments in the NYT on a letter of intent between the Fresno Nuclear Energy Group and the company Areva, owned largely by the French government. Both groups want to promote the construction of European Pressurized Reactors (EPR) in California, stressing the potential for a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in the Golden State.

Although there has been a moratorium in place in California since 1976 until federal measures solve the issue of waste storage or reprocessing, some observers believe in increased chances for a nuclear power rebirth in California. Kammen confirms: "There is certainly a chance that the legal prohibition will be lifted" and goes on: "It is also important to consider the potential for 'nuclear by wire.' Just as California imports coal and hydro power from out of state, the prospects for nuclear power to be imported via transmission is also a candidate that industrial groups are exploring." 

Can the electric car solve our climate and our security problems?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010 - 12:00pm - 1:00pm

Where: Room 323 Barrows Hall at the Energy and Resource Group

Please join us for our weekly lunch seminar:

Brief summary: In order to justify major investments from society, the electric car technologies and business models must meet three criteria: CO2 mitigation, energy security, and economic viability. This talk examines the fundamental questions about the viability of electric vehicles that yet need to be answered by researchers.

Biography: Peter Attia is the Senior Director of Business Development & Corporate Strategy and leads all partnering and sales efforts for Sapphire. Prior to joining Sapphire, Peter was a consultant with McKinsey & Co. where he focused on the healthcare and financial sectors serving 9 of the largest 50 companies in the U.S. Peter’s main focus, applied across all industries, was risk management, as he was a member of McKinsey’s Corporate Risk Practice. Prior to joining McKinsey, Peter did his residency in General Surgery at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, followed by a fellowship in Surgical Oncology at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda. The author of numerous medical and research papers, Peter holds both an M.D. from Stanford University and a B.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics from Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada.

Putting renewables and energy efficiency to work: How many jobs can the clean energy industry generate in the U. S.?

January, 2010
Energy Policy
An analytical job creation mode for the US power sector from 2009 to 2030 is presented.The model synthesizes data from 15 job studies covering renewable energy (RE), energy efficiency (EE), carbon capture and storage (CCS) and nuclear power.The paper employs a consistent methodology of normalizing job data to average employment per unit energy produced over plant lifetime.Job losses in the coal and natural gas industry are modeled to project net employment impacts.Benefits and draw backs of the methodology are assessed and the resulting model is used for job projections under various renewabl eportfolio standards (RPS), EE, and low carbon energy scenarios. We find that all non- fossil fuel technologies (renewable energy, EE, low carbon) create more jobs per unit energy than coal and natural gas. Aggressive EE measures combined with a 30% RPS target in 2030 can generate over 4 million full-time-equivalent job-years by 2030 while increasing nuclear power to 25% and CCS to 10% of overall generation in 2030 can yield an additional 500,000 job-years.

Dan Kammen offers new online course: The Energy Challenge: Balancing Resources and Policies

Click below to visit the course page at the

  click here to open the course page at OLLI

Dates: February 16-March 23, 2010

Fee: $250 registration

How well prepared are we to understand the substantial challenges facing this country and the world around energy resources? This interactive online seminar will provide the opportunity for participants to interact with leading thinkers in the area of energy and policy and to explore the most current issues that influence how we look at dwindling resources, renewable energy and policies.

The Climate Community, a panel discussion moderated by Dan Kammen

Thursday, January 14, 2010 - 6:30pm - 9:00pm

Dan Kammen is going to moderate a panel discussion with energy leaders on COP15, including Amory Lovins, John Picard, Bill Spence and Nancy Sutley. The discussion precedes an advanced screening of the fourth season of the PBS series: e2, the economies of being environmentally conscious.