Margot Gerritsen, Stanford University
Wednesday, April 28, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
Most stakeholders agree that solar energy can provide a significant percentage of U.S. electrical needs over the coming decades. National public support of solar energy projects, and large scale solar projects, is strong. Despite the support and excitement, the first of the newly proposed, and fast-tracked, large scale solar projects are facing significant hurdles. Stanford University's Woods Institute for the Environment recently hosted a two-day forum in which industry, NGOs, policy makers and scientists discussed these challenges and brainstormed ideas to meet them. Margot Gerritsen, who led the forum, will discuss the outcomes of this fascinating forum. Questions addressed in her talk include: Why is there broad excitement about large scale solar? What are fast track projects, and why are they facing high hurdles? What do tortoises have to do with large scale solar projects? How can we make large scale solar work, and what role can Stanford play?
Reyad Fezzani, Chief Executive Officer, BP Solar
Wednesday, March 3, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
Reyad Fezzani is CEO of BP Solar, a pioneering, global solar energy company of BP. Reyad has lived and worked in many parts of the world from which he has developed a deep knowledge and understanding of global business and economics. He will speak from first-hand experience about the peaceful rise of Chinese capitalism, including its recent and growing influence in the solar energy industry.
COP15 and the Stanford Student Experience
Stephen Schneider, Melvin & Joan Lane Professor for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies, and Senior Fellow at Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
Wednesday, February 24, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
Stephen H. Schneider is the Melvin and Joan Lane Professor for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies, Biology Professor, and a Senior Fellow in the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University. He was an NCAR scientist from 1973-1996, where he co-founded the Climate Project. Schneider focuses on climate change science, integrated assessment of ecological and economic impacts of human-induced climate change, and identifying viable climate policies and technological solutions. He has consulted for federal agencies and White House staff in six administrations. Involved with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change since 1988, he was a Coordinating Lead Author, Working Group II, Chapter 19, "Assessing Key Vulnerabilities and the Risk from Climate Change" and a Synthesis author for the Fourth Assessment Report. He along with four generations of IPCC authors received a collective Nobel Peace Prize for their joint efforts in 2007. Elected to the US National Academy of Sciences in 2002, Schneider received the American Association for the Advancement of Science/ Westinghouse Award for Public Understanding of Science and Technology and a MacArthur Fellowship for integrating and interpreting the results of global climate research. Founder/Editor of Climatic Change, he has authored or co-authored over 500 books, scientific papers, proceedings, legislative testimonies, edited books and chapters, reviews and editorials. Schneider counsels policy makers, corporate executives, and non-profit stakeholders about using risk management strategies in climate-policy decision-making, given the uncertainties in future projections of global climate change and climate impacts. He is actively engaged in improving public understanding of science and the environment through extensive media appearances and communications and public outreach.Related Themes:
Chris Llewellyn Smith, President of the Council of SESAME (Synchrontron Light for Experimental Science and its Applications in the Middle East), Vice President of the Royal Society, Visiting Professor at Oxford University
Wednesday, February 17, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
Bert Metz, former co-chair IPCC Working Group on Mitigation of Climate Change, author of "Controlling Climate Change", and advisor to the European Climate Foundation.
Wednesday, February 10, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
Marija Ilić, Carnegie Mellon University
Wednesday, February 3, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
Suedeen Kelly, Former Commissioner, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC)
Wednesday, January 27, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
In energy planning circles, in all sectors of the electric industry, in state utility regulatory commissions, and on Capitol Hill, we’ve heard a lot of discussion over the past year about changing the traditional paradigm surrounding the building of electric transmission in order to extend the country’s electric grid. Recently, the talk has moved into the arena of action. In the U.S. House and Senate, there are numerous bills that propose legislative changes to how we plan and site transmission in America—and how we allocate the cost of it. The Waxman-Markey Climate Change bill, which was passed by the U.S. House of Representatives last year, includes such changes. All of the various bills differ one from the other. One similarity among them all is that the federal government’s role (in the person of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) would be expanded and the states’ role would be reduced.
Why is there a growing consensus for change? What’s wrong with how we’ve always done things? (How have we always done things?) Is there a problem here? What are the proposed changes? What are we trying to accomplish with change? What is the best proposal being put forward? Who likes the changes? Who stands to benefit from the changes? Will there be any losers? Ms. Kelly intends to answer these questions during her presentation. She will also discuss what is likely to happen to the U.S. electric grid if we do not see any legislative change from Congress.
John Curtis, Potential Gas Agency, Colorado School of Mines
Wednesday, January 20, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
Professor Curtis will discuss shale gas resource assessments, possible roadblocks to future shale gas production and the use of gas geochemistry for discovery and development of this potential resource.
Wednesday, January 6, 2010 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
Targets for climate policies at the national and international levels were very poorly assessed, evaluated and communicated prior to the Copenhagen climate summit, and now urgently need to be re-analyzed. Using the results of the recent Energy Modeling Forum Global, US and EU climate policy model comparison exercises as points of departure, this talk looks at what kinds of formal and informal global climate policy agreements might be desirable and/or feasible. The relationship between global objectives and national and international policy architectures is crucial, but often ignored or done inconsistently. We take a hard look here at the large gap in public discourse that currently exists between what might be desirable and what might actually be feasible. We end with a set of pragmatic suggestions for how to proceed. The old policy initiatives did not work, but promising new ideas are emerging, so the need to at least keep the accounting straight has never been more important. Despite their immense popularity, “aspirational” goals and objectives have not, are not and will not ever work.
John Benner, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Wednesday, November 18, 2009 | 04:15 PM - 05:15 PM | Building 420, Room 40 | Free and Open to All
The installed capacity for photovoltaic generation of electricity in the United States is still a tiny slice of the generating mix of the country -- less than 0.1%. The industry must maintain a growth rate greater that 40% annually to achieve national goals to exceed 10% of the total electricity capacity by 2020. Surprisingly, this high rate of growth has been exceeded during the past several years even as the industry passed through its first major bottleneck. The shortage of silicon feedstock certainly impeded the expansion plans of many companies, left much production capacity unused, and likely contributed to a flattening of the trajectory of cost reduction. Perhaps sales would have been even higher had this shortage not constrained growth.
Looking forward, we can anticipate a number of other bottlenecks. We are already seeing longer lead times in equipment delivery. Feedstock for several leading technologies, including silicon, may continue to constrain growth. Distributed generation will soon grow to a point where utilities’ ability to integrate these sources may impede expansion. The current financial turmoil will limit expansion capital. Additionally, high penetration on distribution circuits will add problems that are only now becoming anticipated. Ultimately, we should all expect and welcome a shortage of government incentives, such that the technologies will be competing as low-cost energy producers.
This talk will provide a status report on photovoltaics and explore means to overcome anticipated barriers to sustaining the necessary growth.