Carbon Mitigation Initiative

CMI Integration & Outreach

CMI Integration & Outreach

CMI Integration ntroduces new conceptual frameworks that are useful for climate change policy, including efforts to make emerging statistical analyses of extreme events more accessible; improve the risk-assessment framework for the current scientific understanding of sea level rise; and expand discussions of climate change mitigation and adaptation from global-scale intervention to small-scale urban planning and engineering. In addition, there is new work on the limited potential for carbon dioxide (CO2) reuse after capture and chemical activation.

Research Highlights – At a Glance

Michael Oppenheimer: Cities are engineered landscapes, and planning and development choices can significantly exacerbate or mitigate the impacts of climate and environmental change. The height of buildings and their spatial configuration influence the urban form and surface texture, which further affect the surface aerodynamic processes, energy use efficiency and emissions. A “smart” engineered urban landscape can reduce heat stress, and improve energy efficiency and air quality.

Robert Williams, Eric Larson, and Thomas Kreutz: Collaborating with analysts at NRG Energy, the largest competitive power producer in the US, the Energy Systems Analysis Group (ESAG) launched a new initiative in 2016 to model the prospective evolution of high penetrations of intermittent renewable electricity supplies (iRES – mainly wind and solar photovoltaic) on US grids. Major challenges must be addressed to reach high iRES penetrations cost-effectively. The research seeks to understand and articulate the cost and carbon implications to mid-century of deployment of various grid technologies interacting with alternative electricity and carbon market redesigns.

Robert Socolow: The widely discussed carbon mitigation strategy, CO2 capture and use, is often touted as a way to improve the use of fossil fuel carbon. The idea is to make vehicle fuel by chemically reducing the CO2 in the exhaust stream of a fossil fuel power plant, thereby using the carbon extracted with a fossil fuel twice—once for power and once for transport. This reasoning is flawed, because the same carbon benefit can almost always be achieved more straightforwardly and at lower cost by an alternate use of the large amount of low-carbon energy required to make fuel from CO2. Only a high oil price and a high price for electric vehicles can create a domain of competitiveness for CO2 capture and use.

Current Research Projects

  • Acknowledgments
  • Presentations


    Last update: March 27 2017
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