California’s Carbon Challenge: Scenarios for Achieving 80% Emissions Reduction in 2050

October, 2012
Lawrence Berkeley Lab Energy Analysis & Environmental Impacts Department

Meeting the State of California’s 2050 target of 80% lower greenhouse
gas emissions (GHG) from a 1990 baseline is a challenging goal that cannot be met
without a portfolio of measures and strategies that span both energy demand and
energy supply.

This study focuses on energy emissions with the target of reducing
energy emissions by 80% relative to 1990 energy emissions. Meeting the 2050 target
requires both a sustained commitment to aggressively develop existing technologies
as well as an aggressive and sustained policy commitment to reshape and ultimately
transform the state’s energy system.  The
2050 GHG target for California appears achievable, but requires significant changes
in the way we produce energy, deliver energy services, and utilize energy.

Our 2050  Base Case  energy system has four critical elements:

  • aggressive energy efficiency across all sectors (at technical
    potential levels for buildings and industry);
  • clean or low-carbon electricity;
  • electrification of vehicles as well as buildings and to a lesser
    extent, industry heat; and
  • low-carbon biofuels.   

Thailand Power Sector Working Group

The Mekong Region Power Sector Working Group collaborates with government agencies, non-profit organizations, universities, businesses and to analyze electricity planning and policy from a public interest perspective. The group identifies and analyzes steps to ensure that transformations in the region's electricity sector are economically rational, and that they augment, rather than undermine, social and environmental justice and sustainability.  

The working group's areas technology areas of focus include stepped up integration of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and efficient cogeneration into the region's largely conventional natural gas and hydropower-based generation and transmission networks. Grounded in a solid historical understanding of power sector development in the region, the group's analysis includes regional power trading; environmental analysis of impacts of coal, natural gas, hydropower generation; analysis of planning practices; and analysis of technical, regulatory, and political barriers to sustainable energy infrastructure choices

Kammen & Riordan: Coal's no way to make the job market hop

January, 2013

If Peabody Energy, SSA Marine and Goldman Sachsreally want to stimulate Washington jobs, as they claim, they can find much better ways to do so than build a sprawling $665 million coal terminal northwest of Bellingham. They could use the money instead to fund energy-efficiency and renewable-energy projects. Per dollar invested, efficiency and renewables generate many more jobs than fossil fuels.

Controversial al Jazeera Show on Climate, Carbon, and the World Bank

November, 2012
al Jazeera

Extreme heat waves, declining food stocks, and a life-threatening sea level rise: it's a sobering vision of the future by one of the world's largest and most powerful institutions.

A report issued by the World Bank earlier this month warns of severe consequences if global warming is not dealt with. But the international organisation may itself be contributing to climate change. 

More on the story and Professor Kammen's response in the al Jazeera video and article.

Prof. Kammen Op Ed: U.S. must act to keep innovative solar technology

November, 2012
San Francisco Chronicle

The Santa Clara solar-panel manufacturer Miasole is about to be sold overseas, and possibly dissolved. Its technology is an innovative threat to some existing manufacturers. In fact Miasole’s thin-film manufacturing technique, which can reduce the amount of expensive materials needed by more than 90 percent from conventional solar cells, is a breakthrough technology that will be lost to the United States without immediate action.

Miasole is a very real, productive company, with a 150 million-watt-per-year production facility in California, and more than 60 megawatts already deployed in commercial operation. Miasole is, or was, the third largest thin-film solar energy producer in the world, and has achieved an industry-leading 16 percent efficient solar panels.

Miasole’s planned rollout of thin and flexible solar cells could revolutionize installation and expand market opportunities, further reducing costs. These achievements are based on their patented production process, in which the layers of the thin film are deposited onto a 3-foot-wide sheet of stainless steel foil as it passes around the periphery of large circular production machines.