Environment & Climate Change

145 Items

In 2011, science advisors to the presidents of China and the United States, Wan Gang and John P. Holdren, hold a photo of the historic 1979 U.S.-China agreement on science and engineering.

USDA

- Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center Newsletter

Center's Energy Work Wields Impact and Influence Around the World

| Fall/Winter 2016-2017

The Belfer Center began researching energy technology issues in the late 1990s. Its mission was “to determine and promote the adoption of effective strategies for developing and deploying cleaner and more efficient energy technologies that can reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce dependence on fossil fuels and stress on water resources, and improve economic development.”

In this issue, we look at the history and influence of the Center’s energy innovation efforts in the past two decades by focusing primarily on ETIP’s work in the U.S. and China.

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Journal Article - Climatic Change

Expert Views — and Disagreements — About the Potential of Energy Technology R&D

| June 2016

In order to make R&D funding decisions to meet particular goals, such as mitigating climate change or improving energy security, or to estimate the social returns to R&D, policy makers need to combine the information provided in this study on cost reduction potentials with an analysis of the macroeconomic implications of these technological changes. The authors conclude with recommendations for future directions on energy expert elicitations.

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News - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Study Examines Water Used for Fuel Extraction, Power Generation

January 26, 2016

A new study co-authored by researchers at Harvard Kennedy School's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Duke University’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, and the University of Calgary provides the first comprehensive representation of changing water consumption patterns associated with fuel extraction and power generation.

Report - Energy Technology Innovation Policy Project, Belfer Center

Energy Technology Innovation Policy in the Backdrop of the U.S.-China Emissions Agreement

The Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group at the Harvard Kennedy School and the Tsinghua School of Public Policy and Management convened a workshop at Tsinghua University in Beijing on June 18–19, 2015 to build on the momentum created by the U.S.-China joint emissions agreement and the upcoming Paris negotiations. The objective of the Workshop was to discuss the current state of affairs in China, in the United States, and in selected other countries as well as academic research on: (1) the funding and allocation of government investments in R&D, with a particular focus in energy; (2) the impact of policy on private sector innovation in energy; and (3) the management of publicly funded R&D organizations.

Announcement - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program Seeks New Project Manager

December 24, 2014

The Science, Technology, and Public Policy (STPP) Programis seeking a new colleague to manage, coordinate, and conduct research for a major research project. The project examines a wide range of issues focusing on innovations, climate mitigation, and sustainable energy alternatives in China, the United States, and the European Union.

Discussion Paper - Energy Technology Innovation Policy Project, Belfer Center

Energy Technology Expert Elicitations for Policy: Workshops, Modeling, and Meta-analysis

| October 2014

Characterizing the future performance of energy technologies can improve the development of energy policies that have net benefits under a broad set of future conditions. In particular, decisions about public investments in research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) that promote technological change can benefit from (1) an explicit consideration of the uncertainty inherent in the innovation process and (2) a systematic evaluation of the tradeoffs in investment allocations across different technologies. To shed light on these questions, over the past five years several groups in the United States and Europe have conducted expert elicitations and modeled the resulting societal benefits. In this paper, the authors discuss the lessons learned from the design and implementation of these initiatives.

Book - Cambridge University Press

Transforming U.S. Energy Innovation

How much should the U.S. government invest on energy R&D, and where should those investments be focused? How can the government work with the private sector to accelerate energy innovation? This book addresses these and other important questions to meet the energy challenge with new analytical methods and data.

Announcement - Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, Belfer Center

STPP Fellowships, 2014–2015

November 25, 2013

Each year, the Science, Technology, and Public Policy (STPP) Program at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School welcomes new pre- and post-doctoral fellows and visiting researchers to a select team of scholars exploring the critical role that science and technology play in everyday life.

Journal Article - Environmental Science and Technology

Regional Water Implications of Reducing Oil Imports with Liquid Transportation Fuel Alternatives in the United States

The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) is among the cornerstone policies created to increase U.S. energy independence by using biofuels. Although greenhouse gas emissions have played a role in shaping the RFS, water implications are less understood. We demonstrate a spatial, life cycle approach to estimate water consumption of transportation fuel scenarios, including a comparison to current water withdrawals and drought incidence by state. The water consumption and land footprint of six scenarios are compared to the RFS, including shale oil, coal-to-liquids, shale gas-to-liquids, corn ethanol, and cellulosic ethanol from switchgrass.

Discussion Paper - Energy Technology Innovation Policy Project, Belfer Center

The Next Frontier in United States Unconventional Shale Gas and Tight Oil Extraction: Strategic Reduction of Environmental Impact

    Authors:
  • Vanessa R. Palmer
  • Yiqiao Tang
  • A. Patrick Behrer
| March 2013

The unconventional fossil fuel extraction industry—in the U.S., primarily shale gas and tight oil—is expected to continue expanding dramatically in coming decades as conventionally recoverable reserves wane. At the global scale, a long-term domestic supply of natural gas is expected to yield environmental benefits over alternative sources of fossil energy. At the local level, however, the environmental impacts of shale gas and tight oil development may be significant. The development of technology, management practices, and regulatory policies that mitigate the associated environmental impacts of shale gas development is quickly becoming the next frontier in U.S. unconventional fossil resource extraction.