Energy

131 Items

A man prepares to charge his electric-powered vehicle parked at a shopping mall in Beijing, Monday, Sept. 11, 2017.

AP Photo/Andy Wong

Paper - Environment and Natural Resources Program, Belfer Center

The Role of Electric Vehicles in Decarbonizing China’s Transportation Sector

| April 2019

This paper focuses on the deep decarbonization of the transportation sector. The first part of the paper provides an assessment of China’s efforts to stimulate the rapid deployment of electric vehicles. The second part analyzes the CO2 equivalent reductions from a 20% electric vehicle deployment scenario. It concludes that under most assumptions, emissions will be reduced, but the total reduction will be less than many people believe due to the carbon intensity of battery manufacturing.

Stan Osserman, director of the Hawaii Center for Advanced Transportation Technologies, speaks in front of a new waste to energy facility at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii.

AP/Audrey McAvoy

Journal Article - Journal of Cleaner Production

Stochastic Cost-benefit Analysis of Urban Waste-to-Energy Systems

Municipal solid waste generation is a rapidly increasing challenge that is leading to severe pollution and environmental degradation in many urban areas of developing countries. This study presents the Waste to Energy Recovery Assessment (WERA) framework, a new quantitative decision support model for initial evaluation and alternative comparisons of different thermochemical treatments of municipal wastes. The framework is used to study waste-to-energy (WtE) systems for Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Tokyo, and New York. The results show that WtE systems can fulfill only 1.4–3.6% of 2014 electricity demand in the analyzed cases.

Charging electric Vehicle

Flickr/Sino-German Urbanization Partnership

Journal Article - Elsevier Inc.

Electric Vehicle Recycling in China: Economic and Environmental Benefits

    Authors:
  • Fuquan Zhao
  • Zongwei Liu
  • Han Hao
| January 2019

With the rapid growth of electric vehicles in China, their benefits should be scientifically identified to support the industry development. Although the life cycle benefits of electric vehicles have been analyzed worldwide, the recycling phase has not been fully studied yet, especially in China. Therefore, this study focuses on the economic and environmental benefits of electric vehicle recycling in China. Based on the technology adopted by leading enterprises, the gross income and reduction of energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions are calculated to reveal the benefits.

View of the crescent moon through the top of the earth's atmosphere. Photographed above 21.5°N, 113.3°E by International Space Station crew Expedition 13 over the South China Sea, just south of Macau (NASA image ID: ISS013-E-54329).

NASA

Discussion Paper

Governance of Highly Decentralized Nonstate Actors: the Case of Solar Geoengineering

| November 2018

We here introduce the idea of highly decentralized solar geoengineering, plausibly done in form of small high-altitude balloons. While solar geoengineering has the potential to greatly reduce climate change, it has generally been conceived as centralized and state deployed. Potential highly decentralized deployment moves the activity from the already contested arena of state action to that of environmentally motivated nongovernmental organizations and individuals, which could disrupt international relations and pose novel challenges for technology and environmental policy. We explore its feasibility, political implications, and governance.

A satellite view of the Gansu Dunhuang Solar Park, a photovoltaic power station under construction in Gansu Provence, as seen on June 9, 2018.

DigitalGlobe, CNES/Airbus, Google Earth, used with permission

Report - Environment and Natural Resources Program, Belfer Center

Harvard-Tsinghua Workshop on Low-Carbon Development and Public Policy

| September 2018

The Belfer Center’s Environment and Natural Resources Program and the Center for Science, Technology, and Education Policy at Tsinghua University held the fifth annual Tsinghua-Harvard Workshop on Low-Carbon Development and Public Policy. This event brought together leading experts on climate and energy from academic, business, and government communities in both the United States and China. This year’s workshop focused on electricity systems and renewable energy penetration.

A Chinese power plant.

Wikimedia CC/Tobixen

Journal Article - Journal of Cleaner Production

Changing Carbon Content of Chinese Coal and Implications for Emissions of CO2

| September 2018

The changing carbon content of coal consumed in China between 2002 and 2012 is quantified using information from the power sector. The carbon content decreased by 7.7% over this interval, the decrease particularly pronounced between 2007 and 2009. Inferences with respect to the changing carbon content of coal and the oxidation rate for its consumption, combined with the recent information on coal use in China, are employed to evaluate the trend in emissions of CO2. Emissions are estimated to have increased by 158% between 2002 and 2012, from 3.9 Gt y-1 to 9.2 Gt y-1.

solar panels are seen near the power grid in northwestern China

AP/Ng Han Guan, File

Journal Article - Environmental Research Letters

Climate, Air Quality and Human Health Benefits of Various Solar Photovoltaic Deployment Scenarios in China in 2030

    Authors:
  • Junnan Yang
  • Xiaoyuan Li
  • Fabian Wagner
  • Denise L. Mauzerall
| 2018

Solar photovoltaic (PV) electricity generation can greatly reduce both air pollutant and greenhouse gas emissions compared to fossil fuel electricity generation. The Chinese government plans to greatly scale up solar PV installation between now and 2030. However, different PV development pathways will influence the range of air quality and climate benefits. Benefits depend on how much electricity generated from PV is integrated into power grids and the type of power plant displaced. Using a coal-intensive power sector projection as the base case, the authors estimate the climate, air quality, and related human health benefits of various 2030 PV deployment scenarios.

The AI Advantage of Nations in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

geralt/Pixabay

Analysis & Opinions - Global Policy

The AI Advantage of Nations in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

| Apr. 17, 2018

Like revolutions in the past the on-going AI revolution will produce winners and losers. The first industrial revolution in the 18th century changed the world of production and paved the way for Britain’s global leadership. Similarly, the current digital revolution is redefining the service sector and China’s role in the world.