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"Smart, safe, and just: Goals for the global energy system" Robert Socolow Princeton University Dennis Anderson Memorial Lecture.

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Presentation on theme: ""Smart, safe, and just: Goals for the global energy system" Robert Socolow Princeton University Dennis Anderson Memorial Lecture."— Presentation transcript:

1 "Smart, safe, and just: Goals for the global energy system" Robert Socolow Princeton University Dennis Anderson Memorial Lecture November 23, 2010 Imperial College, London South Kensington Campus, Lecture Theatre 220

2 Dennis Anderson Source: Marsaleete Anderson

3 A Sheffield lad Source: Marsaleete Anderson, photo from A model of a butane-powered York-Bolton Mill Engine and Steam Plant

4 Dennis Preferences Efficiency first Nuclear power, as we know it, is a menace Renewables are compelling The poor get priority I resonate with all four themes. I will be showing at least a few slides on each.

5 There is a big new idea here. I am a science teacher. A teachers job is to prepare students for what lies ahead of them. We want especially to make our students comfortable with ideas that were not familiar to previous generations. There is a big new idea here.

6 Human beings are able to change the small planet we live on For the first time in history, for better or for worse, human beings are powerful enough to affect the whole planet. Forests have been cleared and fisheries have been depleted on a global scale. Most of the low-cost oil has been found. The surface oceans are already more acidic. These are quantitative observations. Our new assignment: Fitting on the planet.

7 Our exuberance is the problem The Earths smallness is the result of the dominance of democratic values, consumer values, and the values of self-realization. The collision with environmental limits was prominently foretold in the 1970s (e.g., Limits to Growth), but we chose to shoot the messenger rather than to heed her.

8 Dont shoot the messenger Twice before, the messenger was shot. Galileo argued that the earth wasnt at the center of the universe and was excommunicated. Darwin argued that human beings were part of the animal kingdom and was cruelly mocked. This is a similar time. We can change the planet. The idea that humans cant change our planet is as out-of-date and wrong as the earth-centered universe.

9 We would much rather live on a planet that was harder to change. When the first doctor we consult brings us a diagnosis we dont like, we should seek a second opinion. But theres a time to move on.

10 Grounds for optimism The world today has a terribly inefficient energy system. Carbon emissions have just begun to be priced. Most of the 2060 physical plant is not yet built. Very smart scientists and engineers now find energy problems exciting.

11 Many new infrastructures Infrastructures for efficient energy Carbon dioxide infrastructure Nuclear fuel cycle infrastructure Renewables and the electric grid

12 The past 50 years: U.S. National Highway System

13 Efficient use of fuel

14 U.S. vehicle-miles traveled, two views Sources: Left: U.S. PIRG Education Fund, The Carbon Boom: State and National Trends in Carbon Dioxide Emissions Since 1990, April 2007 (44 pp.), p. 27. Right: American Physical Society, Energy Future: Think Efficiency.

15 Efficient Use of Electricity Measure, learn, iterate. (Trust, but verify.)

16 U.S. electricity growth rate is falling (3-year rolling average percent growth) Projections Period Annual Growth 1950s s s s s Exponential curve (20 years for rate to fall by half): EIA Percent per year

17 Projections Period Annual Growth 1950s s s s s Nothing in physics or economics forbids negative values! Blue dashed line: RHS. Percent per year U.S. electricity growth rate is falling (3-year rolling average percent growth)

18 Is peak energy demand behind us? If the OECD takes efficiency seriously, annual consumption from now on could be less than in any past year – for both: oil consumption electric power consumption

19 Chinas appliance standards Business as Usual: CO 2 emissions from air conditioners in 2020 are 9x those in New Air Conditioner Standard: Down 25% (45 MtCO 2 /yr) in million new, efficient air conditioners per year in 2020

20 Many new infrastructures Infrastructures for efficient energy Carbon dioxide infrastructure Nuclear fuel cycle infrastructure Renewables and the electric grid

21 The past 50 years: U.S. power plants Source: Benchmarking Air Emissions, April The report was co-sponsored by CERES, NRDC and PSEG.

22 U.S. Power Plant Capacity, by Vintage Issues: Grandfathering, retirement, relicensing, retrofit, repowering Source: EIA.

23 Zero minus zero equals zero If there is no load growth* and there are no retirements, then nothing new is needed. *Demand can grow in some regions and fall in others.

24 The future coal power plant Shown here: After 10 years of operation of a 1000 MW coal plant, 60 Mt (90 Mm 3 ) of CO 2 have been injected, filling a horizontal area of 40 km 2 in each of two formations. Assumptions: 10% porosity 1/3 of pore space accessed 60 m total vertical height for the two formations. Note: Plant is still young. Injection rate is 150,000 bbl(CO 2 )/day, or 300 million standard cubic feet/day (scfd). 3 billion barrels, or 6 trillion standard cubic feet, over 60 years.

25 U.S. CO 2 pipeline infrastructure Source: "Reducing CO2 Emissions from Coal-Fired Power Plants," John Wheeldon, EPRI, presented at the CCTR Advisory Panel Meeting, Vincennes University, Vincennes IN, September 10, Reproduced in Science Applications International Corporation, Indiana and Coal: Keeping Indiana Energy Cost Competitive, June 2010, Fig. 2-15, submitted to Indiana Center for Coal Technology Research Denbury proposes to send Indiana CO 2 to the Gulf states. An Ohio Valley CO 2 pipeline network instead? Advantages: More local jobs Greater storage volume Less climate change.

26 CO 2 capture from Algerian gas In Salah, Algeria, natural gas purification amine contactor towers

27 AEP Mountaineer Plant, 2009, WV Source: Alstom via Yale 360, February 18, 2010 Mountaineer is the first power plant in the world to capture and store carbon dioxide.

28 Many new infrastructures Infrastructures for efficient energy Carbon dioxide infrastructure Nuclear fuel cycle infrastructure Renewables and the electric grid

29 Site: Surry station, James River, VA; 1625 MW since ,. Credit: Dominion. Fission power with dry-cask storage

30 Low-cost, concealable enrichment

31 Global Enrichment Capacity, 2008 Source: Alex Glaser, MAE Seminar, Unit: ton-SWU/yr 1000 GW plant: tSWU/yr

32

33 50 tons owned by Germany & Japan Separated civilian plutonium World stock of separated civilian plutonium: 30,000 Nagasaki- equivalents and still growing (International Panel on Fissile Materials)

34 Frances reprocessing plant, La Hague (1700 tons/yr)

35 Source: Robert H. Socolow & Alexander Glaser, Balancing risks: nuclear energy & climate change, Daedalus, Military- and Civilian-Separated Plutonium

36 Proliferation and the futility of a two-tier, supplier-user world A Story: In May 2006, in Delhi, I asked several leaders of the Indian nuclear enterprise to comment on the merits of a supplier-user arrangement of the world. They refused to do so until they knew in which category India would be. If the U.S. had informed them that they were users, would they have gone underground?

37 Wise global nuclear power Safety: Create counter-incentives to plant relicensing, so that aging plants are retired. Storage: Revise the contract with society in favor of retrievable storage. Deploy dry-cask storage. Proliferation, plutonium: Indefinitely postpone U.S. reprocessing and end reprocessing elsewhere. Proliferation, uranium: Place all enrichment facilities, including ours, under international governance. Governance: Establish a one-tier world.

38 Many new infrastructures Infrastructures for efficient energy Carbon dioxide infrastructure Nuclear fuel cycle infrastructure Renewables and the electric grid

39 Power Sector CO 2 Emissions & Shares of Nuclear Power & Renewables, 2004 Source: WEO 2006

40 Wind farms out of sight Source: New York Times, October 3, 2008.http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/04/nyregion/04wind.html?ref=nyregion Offshore New Jersey: 96 turbines, 346 MW, 16 to 20 miles from coast. $1 billion project. Power starting in 2013.

41 Offshore transmission backbone Announced, Oct 12, 2010 $5 billion project. $200 million initially from Google, Good Energy. 350-mile, 6000 MW transmission line, federal waters, miles offshore. Source: October 12, 2010, NYT

42 Electric transmission for the low-carbon future

43 Every solution can be implemented well or poorly Every solution has a dark side. Conservation Regimentation Renewables Competing uses of land Clean coal Unsafe mining, land impacts Nuclear power Nuclear war Geoengineering Technological hegemony

44 Risk management We must trade the risks of disruption from climate change against the risks of disruption from mitigation… …and search for an optimum pace.

45 Hippocratic oath I will apply, for the benefit of the sick, all measures that are required, avoiding those twin traps of overtreatment and therapeutic nihilism.* * Modern version, Louis Lasagna, 1964,

46 Safe vs. Fair

47 If fair is a per capita concept and the unit of attention is the nation: Safe is not fair. Fair is not safe. Including historical emissions, fair is in even sharper conflict with safe.

48 Beyond per capita We cant solve the climate problem without moving beyond per capita – looking inside countries.

49 Where do the high-emitters live? We project that in 2030, 1.2 billion high-emitters will be responsible for 60% of the worlds emissions… … and half of these high-emitters will live outside the OECD.

50 2-10 <2 >10 Four-way distribution of emitters

51 National Emissions Target Required Reductions Personal Emissions Cap = = Individual emissions above a cap determine national reductions Source: Steve Pacala, private communication, 2008

52 What about the low emitters?

53 No. 1 health impact of energy

54 2-10 <2 >10 Population distribution across 4 regions The poor need not be denied fossil fuels

55 Combine a global-emissions cap and an individual-emissions floor Individual cap: without floor: 10.8 t CO 2 with floor: 9.6 t CO 2 1 The worlds poor do not need to be denied fossil fuels

56 What does 1 tCO 2 /person-yr allow? Direct Energy Use Household rate of use (4.5 people) Individual emissions (kgCO 2 /yr) Cooking1 LPG canister per month 120 Transport70 km by bus, car, motorbike per day 220 Electricity800 kWh per year160 Total500 1 tCO 2 /yr: Double the direct emissions to account for indirect emissions.

57 Required: a multiplicity of empathies Planetary and collective Abstract Uncertain risks, havoc possible Entails a half-century of action Local and individual Vivid Bounded outcomes Produces benefits in days

58 The developing world will decide what kind of planet we live on. For a while longer, the industrialized countries will lead.

59 Post-post-colonialism The North-South relationship needs marriage counseling. The two partners are not listening to each other. The UNFCCC, a post-colonial institution, affirms a two-tier world. Annex I expresses guilt. Non-Annex I expresses entitlement. Needed: post-post-colonial institutions.

60 Planetary identity In the process of taking climate change seriously, we develop a planetary identity. We augment our previous loyalties to family, village, tribe, and nation. Do you have a planetary identity?

61 Prospicience Prospicience: The art [and science] of looking ahead. In the past 50 years we have become aware of the history of our Universe, our Earth, and life. Can we achieve a comparable understanding of human civilization at various future times: 50 years ahead – vs. 500 years and vs years? We have scarcely begun to ask: What are we on Earth to do?

62 Co-authors, recent papers Wedges Steve Pacala Roberta Hotinski Jeff Greenblatt (now, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory) Nuclear power Alex Glaser One-billion high emitters Shoibal Chakravarty Massimo Tavoni (FEEM, Milan) Steve Pacala Ananth Chikkatur (then, Harvard; now ICF in D.C.) Heleen de Coninck (ECN, Netherlands)


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