[UTES] What clean tech will get us to net zero? An overview based on long-term energy scenarios

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Anna Broughel, Program Director of Energy Leadership, Clean Energy Leadership Institute; Adjunct Professor, Johns Hopkins University

Abstract: Energy outlooks provide the factual basis for decision-making in policies, investments, and evaluating climate progress. This talk presents a survey of more than 100 energy outlooks from the period 2018-2020, putting special emphasis on scenarios from non-WEIRD (Western, educated, industrialized, rich and democratic) countries. We will discuss how outlooks anticipate the emerging technology options such as modular nuclear, hydrogen, biofuels, and CCUS. The review suggests that most outlooks lack profound narratives, fail to fully integrate nascent technologies, and adhere to narrow disciplinary bounds. There are hardly any scenarios that consider wildcards (i.e. low-probability high-impact scenarios), which is the reason why the scenario planners failed to anticipate a global pandemic or integrate a technological wild card (e.g. artificial intelligence) into their vision of the future. 

Bio: Dr. Broughel is a Director of Energy Leadership at Clean Energy Leadership Institute. She currently teaches graduate classes in energy economics at the School for Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University and at the University of Maryland College Park. Prior to joining CELI, she was a senior energy economist and statistician at the engineering consulting firm Tetra Tech and an ORISE Fellow at the U.S. Department of Energy. Since 2020, she has served on the Council of the U.S. Association for Energy Economics and has been a non-resident fellow at the Energy Institute at the University of Texas at Austin.


Date and Time
Nov. 16, 2021, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.
Event tags
UT Energy Symposium