June 19, 2024

Technology Politics and the Economy

Published May 26, 2023, 5:20 p.m. by Bethany

In a world where technology and politics are increasingly intertwined, it's important to understand the relationship between the two. This episode of University of California Television (UCTV) looks at how technology affects politics and the economy.

Experts discuss how technology can be used to shape public policy, how it can impact the economy, and how it can be used to influence elections. They also discuss the role of social media in politics and the potential for technology to help solve some of the world's most pressing problems.

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each minute each and every minute we pay

about two hundred thousand dollars for

imported petroleum energy production and

use is implicated as we've heard often

in the last two days implicated in

greenhouse gas emissions and climate

change energy production is also also

transforming landscapes many least

decisions that the Department of

Interior puts forth are litigated and I

will suggest you that these don't reside

simply in oil and gas decisions but also

increasingly litigation on the

establishment and investment in solar in

the mojave desert wind etc so energy

used energy efficiency energy

conservation thus our universal concerns

the concern has moved beyond what it was

perhaps in the 50s 40s 30s beyond the

realm of manufacturers seeking to reduce

costs to the realm of policy politics

and society as we seek to meet broad

social environmental and economic goals

now energy usage as we've heard the last

two days falls broadly into three

categories a third a third of the

world's energy is consumed in buildings

and the associated workplace and

residential uses another third

approximately is used in factories in

plants and a final third is used in

transportation now in each of those

realms some of them touched more on in

these last two days than others in each

of them there are opportunities to do

things differently but before I address

the political economy of where I think

we're going and what is shaping that

path forward I want to reflect a little

bit on where we are I think this message

merits repeating looking at the last 30

years despite despite increases in total

energy use energy efficiencies of

individual products are significant we

have not just started yesterday in the

pursuit of energy efficiency for example

today's refrigerators use about a third

less energy than electricity 30 years

ago from 1973 to 2001 the US economy

grew a hundred and twenty-five percent

while energy use increased about thirty

percent still a lot but proportionate to

the growth of the economy there were

some energy efficiencies along the way

during 1990s alone manufacturing output

climbed forty-one percent but industrial

electricity consumption grew eleven

percent clearly pursuit of efficiencies

enabled that to happen now from the dawn

of the industrial era to the present

we've seen I believe it continued

continuous efforts to do more with less

2d materialized to climb up the clean

fuel ladder to conserve energy we see

technological wonders that use far fewer

resources and less energy to do familiar

tasks and more looms on the horizon we

heard the presentation on nano

production and nanostructures so much

future potential but think of a few

common things that we now utilize a

single a single cd-rom holds 90 million

phone numbers which replaced at a

telephone company five tons of phone

books or consider fiber optics sixty

four pounds of silica yields at

communications network that carries 40 x

40 times the message is carried by a

cable made from one ton of copper now

those innovations yield phenomenal

phenomenal savings in both resources and

energy to get a job done or trucking

think of the advent of GPS we don't

think of that necessarily as an energy

efficiency innovation and yet think of

it with respect to a trucking company a

single trucking firm using GPS has been

able to avoid 4 million miles of driving

per year now I call those innovations

the Viridian verge Viridian being green

verge being coming together the coming

together if you will the linking of

economic action with environmental

benefits what is the bottom line of that

brief technological tale

we've made conservation progress but

conservation is a journey not a

destination there is no final end point

there is still much untapped potential

at the intersection of energy the

economy and the environment and I

believe those opportunities unfold along

two dimensions one dimension is

technological innovations but the other

the other a little bit discussed but

less discussed in this these proceedings

is institutional innovations now the

role of technological innovation in

adding value in the marketplace and in

achieving energy efficiencies is well

recognized the past two days have been

much about that so I will scurry right

past that subject and instead let me

focus on institutional innovation and

off neglected dimension of

entrepreneurship the economy and

environmental progress for environmental

entrepreneurship and energy efficiency

entrepreneurship I want to suggest that

new institutional arrangements that

improve environmental and energy

performance fall into several categories

and let us explore a couple of them

first those institutional arrangements

and changes include new relationships

between manufacturers and suppliers

through green performance contracts now

i'm going to give you an example not in

the realm of energy efficiency but i can

i think you can see its application in

energy as well let us consider saturn

saturn the auto manufacturer used to pay

its paid supplier by the amount of paid

it bought by the volume of paint but a

while back they switched to a contract

in which they paid by number of cars

painted now think about that that simple

contracting change gave that supplier an

instant incentive to think oh boy how

can we make paint that really sticks

well it is really efficient and has no

overspray and so the effect of that the

effect of that was in fact new

innovations in new paints that were

extraordinarily efficient now there are

similar contracts between manufacturers

and suppliers in the realm

of energy efficiency that create

incentives likewise but let me move to

the second category and that is new

relationships and interactions between

producers and customers and here i do

want to pause on something that has been

discussed and that is green building

management for example situations in

which energy managers or energy

contractors fund fund investment in

building owners fund investment in

energy saving technologies the buyer the

buyer pays a portion of the energy

savings over some fixed period of time

to the contractor after which the buyer

then owns those efficiency assets now

this is not purely speculative we've

heard folks talk about it a little bit

but I want to talk about the Department

of the Interior our Bureau of Land

Management and our Park Service actually

are engaged in that kind of contract and

by the way a lot of folks said it

couldn't be done because remember we

have those 2400 facilities they're

little and none of those big energy

contractors johnson controls and blah

blah blah technical term none of those

folks really wanted to tackle our small

dispersed locations so what we did was

to cluster our locations out there in

the middle of Chaco Canyon in the middle

of nowhere in New Mexico and we signed

contracts with with an energy efficiency

provider that had a mobile van that went

from place to place to place did the

analysis and then we purchased across

multiple facilities energy efficiency

technologies lighting and so on and so

forth now we're seeing also and a third

category of institutional arrangement

emergence of new relationships among

producers through waste exchanges or

development of byproducts energy

contracts now through those

relationships one company's waste

becomes another's feedstock or one

company's waste becomes another's energy

i'm going to give you another example in

the waste realm but again applicable for

energy to in texas a mini steel mill

generated fly ash as waste which in turn

it sold to a portland cement company

as feedstock think of koh gen plants

that's fundamentally what they're all

about producing one thing is waste in

this company utilizing it as energy in

another now those institutional and

market contracting arrangements I would

argue matter big time to the issues

you've been talking about over the last

two days to the commercialization of

product because they set the stage they

create the incentives there was a lot of

talk about boy let's have behavioral

change and how do we make it happen well

you know money is a great educator and a

great behavioral change or changer when

you get those kinds of incentives align

to right boy people change what they buy

now those arrangements affect

motivations of energy and materials

users to seek out ever more efficient

technologies and practices that reduce

environmental impacts and enhance energy

efficiency now back to a point I made

earlier opportunities abound a bound to

better meet this nation's energy needs

through conservation lower impact

technologies through new management

techniques but I want to step away from

that and think big really big and

differently about the relationship to

the world around us and its implications

for energy efficiency a few months ago

and some of you have heard me in

different settings talk about this a few

months ago the celebrated author Thomas

Friedman dubbed 2008 as the year the

great disruption began buying years of

economic growth eyeing disparities

between rich and poor nations eyeing so

much consumption of stuff Thomas

Friedman opens that and I quote we just

can't do this anymore he recycles a

theme that recurs every so often for

different reasons at different times

since Malthus first warned of too many

people consuming too much stuff as other

pundits judge the world's economy in

terms of banking and credit and access

to capital Friedman talks of even bigger

cataclysms of economy and the

environment we are he says simply

ranting up running out of stuff

depleting the natural capital of the

planet now I think Friedman offers the

wrong diagnosis

today's profound economic woes but I

want to get to the positive element of

his message as well I think he offers

the wrong diagnosis for today's woes he

misses the dynamic processes in a

competitive marketplace that enable us

to do more with less some of which have

been discussed for two days as far back

as Henry Ford's first assembly lines

engineers measured and tinkered to

reduce costs by reducing waste and

energy use per unit of output even

something as prosaic as the coke can and

here it's late in the afternoon so we're

going to have some show-and-tell even

something as prosaic as a coke can has

gone through multiple evolutions so that

the ones hard to crush metal can I of

course him way too young to remember the

60s when it was a sign of virility to

crush this can but even today I can

squash it and if I'm lucky I can rip it

into why is that and what does it have

to do with this conference why is that

that's because it now takes just 28

pounds of metal to make a thousand cans

we're 40 years ago a thousand cans

required 168 pounds of metal that is a

process of dematerialization new

materials etc about which much of this

conference is looking now Friedman's

diagnosis may be wrong but he ends with

a very important admonition or perhaps

it is a cheer he cheers for economic

assessment that sees opportunity

opportunity in nurturing nature's

capital now natural landscapes as

described by scholar Gretchen daily at

Stanford wetlands and see marshes

watersheds of free-flowing rivers and

streams forests grasslands even even

urban parks and roadside tree canopy

have multiple benefits for human

communities I am going to tie this to

energy efficiency these natural systems

purify water they moderate temperatures

they absorb pollutants from the air they

provide habitat for bees that pollinate

crops they protect coastal communities

from storms the list goes on and on

yet the connection between these

services and the natural world around us

is often invisible and neglected this

neglect results in under investment in

environmental protection and increased

impacts from land water and coastal

transformation with ecosystem

degradation come corresponding losses of

natural system functions and their

benefits to human communities now why do

I mention ecosystem functions in a

conference on energy efficiency it is

because those losses of those natural

functions do carry large and hidden

energy costs natural systems provide for

the most basic of human needs services

that enhance safety health and economic

opportunity let me give you an example

the city of New York invested over 1.5

billion dollars to protect and restore

the Catskill Mountain watershed a web of

natural systems that for years decades

had purified the city's water supply but

was undergoing degradation and

development they invested 1.5 billion to

protect that watershed why because their

alternative to meit's meet safe drinking

water standards was to invest 9 billion

dollars in mechanical filtration

treatment camp plants now investing in

nature's capital saved the city money

and enhanced habitat a24 a win-win but

it also translated into significant

avoided energy use that mechanical water

filtration systems would have required

let me explore this theme a little bit

more American Forests evaluated that

that's a nonprofit organization

evaluated the extent of tree canopy

insist cities like Houston Roanoke

Atlanta etc Houston Houston lost sixteen

percent of its tree canopy over the last

three decades translating into a loss a

loss of annual air pollution removal

services if you will pegged it about 38

million dollars and an annual loss of

stormwater management services of about

two hundred and thirty-seven million

they're alternative with that loss was

to enlarge their storm water treatment

facilities and infrastructure the loss

also meant increased energy usage

consider figures from one city San

Antonio lost tree canopy in San Antonio

so you guys are talking all of this

high-tech stuff really important but

some of our opportunities some of our

opportunities to achieve energy

conservation perhaps we call it rather

than efficiency reside in nature

services in San Antonio over a 15-year

period the loss of tree canopy is

estimated to equate to about 17 point

seven million dollar increase in

residential summer energy costs so all

the while that folks are scrambling for

new air conditioning devices and

lighting devices and so forth on the

other hand we're increasing our use of

that stuff by chopping down all the

trees in the city now those examples

highlight the significant services

natural systems provide failure I would

suggest to recognize those services

result in decisions that diminish

degrade and even destroy natural assets

the result of that destruction can be

increased environmental harm yes higher

costs to provide services such as water

filtering yes and foregone benefits of

energy savings and community safety the

20th century was a time of paving over

our cities I believe the 21st century

will be a time of recreating natural

landscapes natural urban streams and

other permeable landscapes and that

highlights the intersection the

criticality of converging biology and

engineering it highlights the relevance

of materials innovation in

infrastructure and buildings and energy

systems now buoyed by the expanding

academic research on ecosystem services

some recent public policy is beginning

to tiptoe in this direction and set the

stage for our future the farm bill of

2008 record 2007 requires that the

Department of Agriculture developed a

framework for measuring those ecological

services benefits including for example

energy savings from tree

etc EPA has actually now allowed

watershed permits through which

wastewater treatment plants may enter

into trading arrangements with farmers

to achieve permit requirements for

temperature rather than installing high

cost and high energy consuming

refrigeration systems again to achieve

those temperature goals one trade in the

tualatin River Basin resulted in

payments to farmers of six million

dollars to plant shade trees in riparian

areas avoiding 60 million dollars in

cost to construct refrigeration systems

and of course the ongoing operation

costs of those systems now let me make

one thing clear investing in nature's

capital offers economic opportunity but

it is also I believe a central

foundation of 21st century

environmentalism and it is it is part of

a smart energy strategy for this nation

tree cover and urban areas east of the

Mississippi has declined thirty percent

over the last 20 years alone while the

urban footprint has increased twenty

percent now many here have explored

technological opportunities for energy

efficiency in lighting computing

building design I applaud those efforts

they're fantastic they're fascinating

some of you have examined energy sources

beyond fossil fuels alternatives that

might be utilized and this summit has

explored crossing the bridge from

innovation to implementation through

economic investment in commercialization

but there is a political dimension to

smart energy futures a dimension shaped

by context and challenges and I want to

mention a couple of those that take us

perhaps seemingly far afield I want to

highlight three elements of a context

that I think will affect energy politics

and economics this is the really big

picture beyond direct energy policy

about which you have heard something the

last two days and that first element

that first context is water water moving

water from where it is to where it is

wanted is a major part of energy use in

the West and elsewhere in

the nation that means there are huge

opportunities to effect energy

consumption that reside in rethinking

water infrastructure and technology and

many energy sources require large

amounts of water or can affect water

quality energy production is linked to

water let us think of that national

ethanol goal the 2012 target of 7.5

billion gallons per year of ethanol

requires 30 billion gallons of water to

process equivalent to the total water

needs of Minneapolis if the if one

quarter one quarter of the crop grown

for ethanol needs irrigation it would

require nearly a trillion gallons of

water per year that's equivalent to the

combined usage in all the cities of

Arizona Colorado Idaho and Nevada much

energy production and use is linked to

water yet water constraints loom large

the National Science Foundation issued a

recent report a year or so ago that

concludes that abundant supplies of

clean fresh water can no longer be taken

for granted not just in the West we're

on Colorado's capitol building is

emblazoned the phrase whiskeys for

drinking but waters for war but rather

across the nation we've witnessed

burgeoning populations in the nation's

driest areas sixty percent in Nevada

forty percent in New Mexico thirty

percent in Colorado climate change is

altering the availability and timing of

water off stream water withdrawals in

the United States are estimated at four

hundred and eight thousand million

gallons per day or three times the

average flow over Niagara Falls enough

water to fill the Astrodome every two

minutes energy strategies I would argue

thus are linked to water strategies they

are intimately integrated and linked our

energy efficiency futures I believe

cannot ultimately help us go where we're

going and isolation from contemplating

water supply in water quality are there

technologies to reduce energy

moments for supplying water to

communities and farms and as we supply

energy whether bio fuels fossil fuels

nuclear power other fuels how can we

minimize water requirements now this

brings me to the second big context and

that is climate change that's a

no-brainer it's a key driver of

economics of energy the politics of

climate change will shape our energy

futures the advent of national climate

policy will affect the relative costs of

different energy options but the devil

is in the details therefore the shape of

energy futures will partly be linked to

the shape of the climate policy future

and that is still a tale unwritten the

third contextual element is the

relationship of land and energy supplies

perhaps coming out of the Interior

Department this is near and dear to my

heart many alternative energy sources

photovoltaics wind ethanol and other

biofuels can be very land transforming

so as we pursue clean energy and energy

efficiency I believe we need to broaden

consideration of what we mean by what's

green yes the carbon footprint matters

but so too does the landscape footprint

and Wildlife impacts matter we need only

look right now at the mojave desert and

the scramble the scramble to site solar

and wind projects to anticipate

challenges of land transformation that

scramble is already invoking lawsuits by

the way at any point in time the

Interior Department is subject to 3,000

lawsuits there's an old Chinese a Dodge

that observes that in our challenges

reside opportunities my challenge to

those gathered is how do we minimize how

do we minimize this broader

environmental footprint of energy on

landscapes and that in essence

introduces into the equation and

additional design constraint the are

smart energy future also confronts other

challenges some of those have been

mentioned among those challenges is the

marketplace itself and institutional

procurement practices we heard from the

panel on consumer dynamic dynamics as

well my own Reese

search a decade ago on this topic affirm

the remark of the panelists that is that

the willingness to pay more to buy green

may indeed be limited but procurement

can create unnecessary impediments to

technological adoption sometimes energy

efficiency technologies and practices

generate life cycle savings but the

costs are more upfront many firms and

governments acquire goods calculating

the relative upfront purchasing costs

but have no mechanism no contracting

mechanism no acquisition mechanism to

look at long-term or lifecycle costs

success therefore of energy efficiency

technologies may hinge as much on

changing contracting rules as on the

merits of the technology alone they will

hinge to on procurement rules I want to

suggest one other thing as folks talked

about incentives and and federal

policies and state policies to encourage

energy efficiency I'd like to suggest

that we do need to be wary of legislated

technology prescriptions now if there's

prescribing your technology you leap for

joy but that prescription in fact may

preclude the advent of other new ideas

EPA currently has a potpourri of

voluntary and mandatory energy

efficiency standards for appliances

lighting in other products and also many

certification programs regulations

standards and certifications can

stimulate results and that is a good

thing but perhaps we need to emphasize

performance standards rather than

mandating specific technology outcomes

now I want to reference Yogi Berra my

favorite philosopher he once opined that

the future ain't what it used to be now

perhaps in a more sophisticated and less

ironic way scholar Richard white made a

similar point when he wrote that and I

quote all the context in the world

doesn't explain tomorrow which is where

you always end up now I have offered

some context I have summarized some

current circumstances challenges and

trends yet

stuff happens so I speak not as

Cassandra peering into a crystal ball

but as a perennial optimist that human

ingenuity will lead us to a better

future I think we saw that in the

spectacularly innovative concepts

presented over the last two days but the

intersection of the economy politics and

energy is an agenda that transcends I

think you can see from my comments

energy itself the politics and economic

economics of energy demand I think

holistic horizons those horizons include

very fundamentally reconsidering water

how we deliver in use water the

relationship to energy sources

infrastructure and uses it includes a

look at cityscapes not just buildings

about which you have heard much in the

last two days but the landscapes in

which buildings are situated

self-evidently it also includes

transportation policy and politics

infrastructure and conveyances one

speaker did suggest thinking of energy

efficiency in the context of everything

that uses energy as perhaps not helpful

I want to offer a different perspective

on that question for the political

economy of energy I believe we must look

to its intersection with land water

cityscapes if you will everything isn't

as Peter Drucker the noted management

guru once said entrepreneurship

opportunities lie anywhere and

everywhere so to do energy efficiency

opportunities lie anywhere and

everywhere not simply not simply in the

traditional categories we think of so

perhaps as a political scientist I want

to suggest also as a final remark that

there is an imperative to recognize the

significance of political drivers to

technological choices thank you very


but you know being the last speaker

there's some good news and bad news the

good news is whatever has to be said has

already been said and I just have 50

other slides to show you yeah but the

bad news is you're stuck with me so I'll

try to be very brief I just want to give

us start of a slightly different

perspective and the perspective is

before we get to sort of the details of

Technology and I'm going to mostly talk

about technology that's my background

I'm not a policy guy although I pretend

sometimes to be but i just want to show

you this map this is the population

density in the world all right we are

over over there right just this is la

the darks but we are over here I'm i

live in Northern California over there

and you know there's some spots in New

York Washington out here the population

density is in India and China Japan

they're obvious in Africa and I want to

then lay so this is the population

density this is roughly the energy usage

in the world and you can actually see

the brightness out here if the lights

are a little off we can actually see it

better and here's Europe India China

Japan etc what is interesting you saw

this I think Steve den bars showed this

before what is interesting is if you

overlay them together and this is the

overlay which shows a mismatch and the

mismatch is that we had a few pockets of

energy or population density but look at

this bright spot out here in the United

States and look at them the population

density which are in red and these

people have not yet turned on their

lights and if they turn on the lights

metaphorically in the way we have in our

state's we are toast and so the big

challenge is today and while we should

certainly talk the United States the big

challenge is how

we turn off the lights in the right way

without changing the lifestyle too much

you may have to do so an economic growth

and how do we enable them to turn on the

right lights metaphorically that's

really the challenge of a lifestyle of

our upper lifetime and many other

lifetimes now so this I like this chart

this is co2 emission per capita you

could put that graphic in many different

ways this is GDP per capita so United

States high GDP and also high co2 per

capita emissions and this is this line

out here is the average of the world

five about roughly five tons of co2 per

person so again graphically now the

challenge is how do we bring United

States down there's no question we have

a responsibility to do that but the

other part is look at China and India

and Brazil over here all right Mexico

all these these are where the population

growth is going to be and the end of the

day you have to when people do not often

like to say this it is a population

growth problem every indications around

the world that the energy efficiency

energy / GDP they're all in the right

direction except for one vector and

that's population and these people and

we have a double whammy out here one is

that these countries the gdp per capita

is increasing and the second whammy is

the population is also increasing so we

have a nonlinear effect out here and the

question that we have to ask is that

will India China Brazil take this route

or will they take that route and the

drought is extremely critical because if

they take the US or the Western route I

think we are toast in many ways some of

the things that we will see around if we

will be irreversible and so we have we

we not only have to do this but we have

to enable the rest of the world to do

that this one out here because that is

what it will take for us to survive and

you can call it sustainability and many

different you know

words for it but that's really where we

have to be okay it's all that now let's

concentrate the United States ok this is

the energy supply and demand which is

very nicely put by Lawrence Livermore

Lab this is supply and this is demand

and you can see that these are put in

numbers and I you know as an engineer

you like to put the numbers data out

there to see how much they are and so

this is petroleum natural gas coal

nuclear this is the primary energy

nuclear solar point 006 and these these

the thickness of these lines showing how

much magnitude and I don't think there's

a font to show how small solar is today

so solar certainly has to be done

because that is the at the end of the

day the the sustainable energy source

but to increase that at a rate that will

make a dent in the primary energy supply

we have to grow this industry at a

really fast rate and that requires some

fundamental changes in our approach we

do solar and it was very nice to hear

your back talk about the actual

fundamentals the signs that is required

to really bring in game changes because

that's what we need to accelerate this

side decarbonize that and reduce the

energy demand and and mix and match with

the right supply and demand to transmit

distribution simply easier said than

done but that's what it is all right so

okay so now what do we do well I'll say

a few words about Berkeley this is on

the supply side we have a Helius project

that was started about three or four

years ago and there's is essentially

sunlight to fuel and we said there are

four primary routes and we don't know

which one's going to win okay and we

need to try out all four and we'll see

five years from now 10 years from now

which one is winning well the two of

them are biological one is take the

plant waste and turn that into a

hydrocarbon not ethanol but hydrocarbon

jet fuel or gasoline how do we do that

and one is in the waste one is

photosynthetic microbes and turning that

into hydrocarbons and

these two have been funded by one by BP

and the other by joint bioenergy

Institute by Office of Science and do II

and the two other ones are non

biological and this is understanding

photosynthesis at the fundamental level

we still don't quite understand how the

photons are actually absorbed and they

interact in some coherent way and split

water and from hydrido and from

carbohydrates at the end we don't quite

understand at the molecular level and if

he did it's like learning flight from

birds okay we are that stage if you can

just learn a little bit we might be able

to do better than photosynthesis and

that is that's the other approach and

the finally scalable PV using materials

that are abundant and that are cheap and

that are non-toxic and so that using for

electrochemistry so that's a solar

energy research center buddy we and this

is on the supply side that other things

going on but I want to talk about

efficiency and this chart has been shown

before but we are proud to be in

California in fact we are actually

blessed to be in California but wow how

did this happen this is per capita

electricity consumption this is year and

we are proud to have my division format

that that junk at the turning point out

here this is often called the Rosenfeld

effect after art Rosenfeld because he

was he was an inspiration for many of us

and he's still around his California one

of the commissioners and but there are

two there this boat interplay between

technology and policy working together

and the two policies that happened was

the decoupling of the utilities that is

where the utilities are actually

incentivized to sell less energy and and

actually make you more energy efficient

and actually and make money from that

and that you know it's all been adopted

in 10 or 11 states and I've mentioned

that earlier it should be a federal

policy and of course the rate goes up a

little bit and you know it but is

distributed we all contribute to this

that's a sacrifice we all need to make

so anyway so that's one and the effect

of that I'll just show you one this is

the refrigerator as someone mentioned

refrigerators this is the famous

refrigerated chart energy use per

unit of refrigerator this is nineteen

seventy three or so peeked up there and

now it has been coming down it's about

14 to one-fifth of the energy use per

unit of refrigerator and this is a

combination of thick of regulation and

technology working together and bringing

this down and the price has actually

come down in equivalent dollars so it's

not that it's more expensive it's less

expensive it can get less expensive and

the size is actually increased and

that's limited by the size of your

kitchen door now you know of course

people have refrigerators in the garage

now also but that that's the size

increase the impact of that is worth

noting here is the impact but ok so now

between supply and demand here is

billion kilowatt hours per year this is

the energy use that would have happened

by refrigerators in 1974 standards and

this is what it is today and so that's

the energy that it's saving per year

compare that to 50 million to kilowatt

pv system Three Gorges Dam ok existing

renewables without the hydro and this is

a conventional hydro so just by one

appliance you could do so much and now

think about all the appliances and the

buildings etc and you know if one argues

that we should you know this is a great

argument for saying the energy

efficiency in appliances and buildings

etc it will pay for itself in the long

run now let's talk about buildings

you've seen this chart before and seen

these numbers I'm going to go quickly if

we did nothing by 2030 the buildings

would need sixteen percent more

electricity which means about 200

gigawatts of electricity capacity and at

whatever price we have about two or

three dollars per for what or sometimes

five dollars of our depending on the

source we are talking about 500 to a

trillion-dollar foundered billion two

trillion dollar investment which means

about 25 to 50 billion dollars per year

of capital investment in power plants if

he did nothing because the electricity

demand increase and so either we do that

and this is not even counting the carbon

cost or

make it more efficient which one is more

you know more cost effective I would

argue that it is the efficiency and and

buildings can provide grade level

storage you're talking about grid and

storage well buildings can provide

spinning reserves and storage and both

Michael McQuaid and I testified in front

of Congress myself in front of the

Senate and and Michael in front of house

in front of the house and you can find

these testimonies and we sort of laid

out what its needs and it's actually

very similar so just to give you what

the challenge is Fe so there is 2007

energy depends Security Act 2007 so zero

net energy building wonderful and if you

did that today I won't go into the

details if you reduce the energy by

eighty percent in new construction and

fifty percent in existing construction

if it happened today we will not need

the electricity from half the qualify

power plants that's the impact and the

energy that you actually need if you

provided that by nuclear which is about

twenty percent electricity and other

renewables you would have a zero carbon

footprint buildings in a commercial

building the industry and this is at a

growth rate about 1.7 percent per year

in China it is it is seven percent a in

the eights eight and a half percent

growth that's where the new buildings

are really happening and they are asking

us for help in designing the right kind

of buildings and so this is the

opportunity the challenge is let me show

you what the challenge and as an

engineer you have to look at this and

say wow here is here is the actual

energy use intensity that is that is the

joules per square square meter or in

this case kilo BTU per square foot per

year okay it's still the same old units

and these are lead buildings this is

data from LEED buildings certified

silver gold platinum the average that's

the average and the average as you go to

higher and higher rating the average

goes down well and this average is lower

than the national average is about 90

all right but look at the spread and the

data okay there's all over the place

what is more interesting is if you pluck

the ratio of the measure the actual

measured performance the actual

performance to the design performance

and plotted against

the design intent design performance and

so zero net energy is going this way and

what you find is that as you make the

design tighten tighter to to zero net

energy building your actual performance

goes about two to three times more and

so you defeat the purpose this is actual

data we aren't making it up but if you

loosen it a little bit you actually can

do better than the design performance

the point is the design performance

doesn't mean much at the end of the day

except to reduce the average but for

particular buildings the actual

performance could be way off especially

if you try to get to zero net energy how

did this happen how come lead is not

using actual performance everything is

based on simulation okay simulation is

great but if you don't measure you'll

never know and the problem is that the

building codes today we talked about so

California is very blessed because title

24 but title 24 is based on simulation

design performance not based on measure

performance as an engineer you say hey

you got to measure things and find

whether they meet some standards we do

that for a computer we do that for a

cell phone we build for everything we

see what is the performance for cars so

there is a mismatch out here what we

there's a lack of measurement and

policies requiring it and the

fragmentation of the process will come

to that later on so that's a fundamental

issue and we're actually now we're

working with the peer program to see if

they would actually support a study to

see if you had measured performance sort

of beyond towel 24 time 12 24 on

steroids if you may what would be the

economic impact if you did better than a

standard would you could you trade your

efficiency because you actually make

money out of it if you are better than a

particular standard so that's a policy

change which with technology so this is

the fragmentation of the building's

industry you architect structural

mechanical it's a silo they don't talk

to each other and then you have the

actual process of designing your design

detail design working drawings tender

planning scheduling and it's all sort of

step-by-step process and you put them

together you get all these operational

angles which don't talk to each other

it's a major fragmentation there is no

system integrator as opposed to the

aerospace in

tree or the computer industry where the

system integrators at the end of the day

Apple will give you a computer and will

tell you this is how it will perform and

generally performs that way there's

nothing like that in the building

industry and so and so there's we need

to integrate the process community than

to get the building's system align

incentives they're split incentives in

this as well so there's a policy and one

of the things that that I have

recommended is is a policy innovation

just like decoupling we need some kind

of a decoupling for the buildings that

is national standards based on measured

energy and indoor and vinyl quality

performance you cannot ignore the indoor

environment because you will then just

shut off the light set of AC it will be

hot and sweaty and you can save a lot of

energy that's not what we want so how do

you balance that is very very important

so anyway this is the technical part we

need we don't have an operating system

for a building just like we have for a

computer we don't have how do you

coordinate the activity and really make

your building adapt to you or to the

people we don't quite have that it is an

open loop right now essentially and that

operating system the UNIX for building

needs to be written for which we have to

understand how systems work for which we

need some more dynamics fluid mechanics

heat transfer controls all the basics of

engineering is required for this um this

is we have some success story in in New

York Times building where lbl was asked

to help in lighting daylighting this is

daylighting next to windows and this is

electrical lighting and we have worked

with San Francisco Federal Building

which in San Francisco you should not

need HVAC or not AC at least so this is

naturally ventilated buildings etc which

really reduces the cost there's demand

response very important this is a

technology that was developed do we have

Adam Anderson research center of many

np8 leading it supported by California

peer program where you have the you know

the utilities and their buildings and

here is using the internet for

communication to say that if you if the

demand goes up can you turn off the

thermal stab you change the thermostat

so that you essentially use the thermal

inertia of a building

as a storage medium and so that it'll

take you about 10 or 15 minutes to feel

the difference and by that time you may

have shaved off some people owed and

there's some real data where you can

shave off the peak loads etc and this is

this should be done and this because the

demand the the peak load is very very

expensive batteries there was a talking

batteries which a mist and jean-marie is

of course a very in a well-known person

in this area I happen to visit a few of

us happen to visit Tesla Motors and we

took a ride in the Roadster if you

haven't if you get a chance please do

that because then you'll realize this is

0 to 60 in 3.9 seconds it's more

acceleration than a plane taking off and

they ask you to turn on the radio and

you put your hand and they accelerate

and you can your hand goes back and so

power density is not a problem it's the

range of the car the energy density is a

critical problem and the energy density

is safety listen I'm cycle life can you

go 2,000 can you have a battery which

lasts the car okay several thousand

cycle lights and of course cost is a

major issue that is the Tesla is very

well positioned to be a power train

company and they will enable not only

their own cars they're coming up with a

sedan at fifty thousand dollars which

may be affordable to few but they

enabling other smart cars and others and

I think electric cars given the price

differential between a kilowatt hour of

gasoline or kilowatt-hour electricity in

China and India will most likely see

electric cars first happen in the Tata

nanos which are much easier to retrofit

than a chevy volt and and that we'll see

probably happen but nevertheless this is

something that that you know battery in

terms of energy density is absolutely

critical and we need materials knowledge

these are some limiting numbers out here

this is today's battery which has

doubled in capacity in the last 16 to 18

years so this is the Moore's law for

battery unfortunately it's not very fast

but this is lithium ion batteries with

graphite anode lithium cobalt aids and

as the cathode but there are other

battery structure and this is the this

is the standard it

18 650 cells and the the large batteries

would go into the the whole battery pack

for Tesla is this big and it's about 400

pounds all made up of batteries like

this into modules and so the whole

approach to batteries could potentially

needs to change how do you make

batteries but this is lithium-air

battery lithium sulfide battery this is

5000 watt hour per kilogram and this is

300 on order magnitude higher but of

course there are fundamental issues and

to be solved and this happens yeah I

strongly believe in having many people

believe the fundamental understanding of

materials at atomic molecular scales

combined with nano structured

architecture could lead to major advance

in better technology and we really need

to do that in the United States let me

quickly carbon capture sequestration no

I don't think anyone's talked about this

but the United States China India and

Russia have the four biggest reserves of

coal and people will use that all right

and because they need economic growth

there's no other renewables and not

catching up fast enough so we have to do

this carbon capture carbon capture is

extremely expensive carbon sequestration

is risky so we have to address both

these problems so where is the cost well

let me show you so today how the carbon

capture I'll just talk about the general

the science behind it so you have a co2

absorber then you absorb any bynes co to

do something then you regenerate it by

heating and then you post process we

pressurize it and transport and put it

down the carbon capture the expensive

part is all out here the capital in the

operating costs how is it done today

there are two fundamental chemistry's

for co 2 1 is the photosynthetic

chemistry which is uphill you need a

photon only need few photons to go

uphill the other chemistry it's downhill

reaction which is the bicarbonate

reaction all right and all carbon

capture today is by there is no third

chemistry by the way if someone can

develop it that would be fantastic

that'll be game-changing potentially so

this is the bicarbonate reaction you get

carbon dioxide plus water okay and you

get a bicarbonate and then you react it

with a base a Lewis base which is either

an amine or a sodium or calcium

I on and you get calcium carbonate

sodium bicarbonate and ammonium

carbonate etc and these are different

binding strengths and different

affinities and here is where the the

system level performance and the

chemistry plays a role so the high

binding system calcium carbonate if you

do high binding strength and high

selectivity you have a small size

collector ok so it's low capital cost

because a very efficient it binds

immediately but then the operating cost

is very hard because you've got to break

the bond somehow so you going to heat it

at very high temperatures so you got

high grade heat and thereby you need to

spend energy and today the carbon

dioxide co2 capture using a mean capture

or calcium carbon capture is very

expensive one third of the power or from

a coal-fired power plant goes into into

carbon capture and that is too expensive

on the other hand if you low binding

stripe let's say means low binding

strength you can then use the waste heat

of a power plant to decouple it because

it's low binding but it only are you

have high capital costs because you need

a lot of it because the chances of it

binding may be low and so that's where

the trade-offs are however if you can

the rate limiting step is this reaction

and if you can somehow enhance the rate

with a catalyst with it with some kind

of a catalyst then then you could

potentially get low capital cost and low

operating costs and that would be very

interesting by the way we have catalyst

enzymes in our body which does that all

the time is called carbonic anhydrase

and it that controls the pH in our blood

ok as we speak so can we emulate biology

to have catalysts maybe inorganic

catalyst with some zinc Center it's a

metal center to change this around and

if you could do that it could

potentially make a fundamental change in

how we do carbon caption would use the

cost I will I cannot end a talk without

do a talk with thermal electrics because

that's what I do and John and I have

been collaborating for the last 10 years

I'll show you just I think there was a

talk by lon Bell wonderful talk on from

elected let me just show a little bit

this is this is traditional chrome


the heat engine it can be used as a for

power generation refrigeration or heat

pumping and and it's made of

semiconductors and today the material or

the last 50 is the material has been

bismuth telluride it's very expensive

and the efficiency is not high enough

and you have to increase up a figure of

Merit called ZT I won't go into the

details of that it is a combination of

properties and ziti needs to be higher

than to at least hopefully three or more

to be able to perform at a level that is

cost effective at like a dollar per watt

kind of thing and this is the history of

ZT from 1950s and nothing much has

changed except for the last few years

and this is one of the hardest problems

in material science how do you reduce

the thermal connectivity material

without reducing the electrical

transport properties and actually

enhancing it I won't go into the details

of this again but this is a really hard

challenge and an array or bike has

worked on this long time ago in reducing

thermal conductivity etc this is

something that we have done jointly with

Santa Barbara on using nano structures

to do what is called phonon scattering

and I want again but this is now

potentially leading to ZTS which are

higher than then one you know maybe

maybe 1.5 or higher and at higher

temperatures as well but i want to show

something and this is 35 material

something that we are quite excited

about what we don't know for sure if

this is the right thing to do or not but

we are quite excited about this and that

is using silicon and silicon is the most

abundant semiconductor and it is also

you got a hundred plus billion dollar

industry in manufacturing and if that

could be turning to thermoelectrics that

would be great except that bulk silicon

is terrible you've got a zero point or

one and that just not doesn't cut it and

we surrender piteously got into some

nano structuring of silicon and where we

found these are some nano wires which

are roughened on the surface and that

roughness surprisingly and we're still

verifying in many different ways reduces

the thermal conductivity to a point that

makes the ziti about one and that

there's some

fundamental physics that potentially

could come out of it again I won't go

into the details but this you know if

you verified over the next year or so if

this could potentially change the game

because if you can raise the ziti beyond

one in these materials low-cost

materials this could be quite

interesting let me stop here by putting

the chart again of the overlay and I

think this is sort of the global picture

and let me stop here and I think I've

taken more time than I should have

appreciate your patience and your

attention thank you very much



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