Mark Stone/University of Washington

First Quarter DecarbCast

We work hard to stay on top of the latest technical and economic decarbonization developments and share what we are learning with our community. Here is a selection of some of the best podcasts and webinars the Clean Energy Transition Institute team engaged with during the first three months of 2022:

From Chemicals to Concrete: Rebecca Dell on Decarbonizing Industry

Rebecca Dell, program director for industry at ClimateWorks Foundation and author of the seminal paper, Build Clean: Industrial Policy for Climate and Justice, appeared on several of our favorite pods this quarter. Her commentary was particularly helpful to our work on decarbonizing industrial emissions and clean materials manufacturing.

First up on January 24, Shayle Kann talked to Dell about the many pathways to decarbonizing chemicals. Kann is a partner at Energy Impact Partners and his excellent podcast, Catalyst, which he produces in partnership with Canary Media, is not to be missed.

Next up, Dave Roberts of Volts interviewed Dell on a broad range of decarbonization issues for his February 11 podcast. This two-hour podcast covered decarbonization strategies for multiple industrial uses and is an excellent primer.

Then on February 24, Dell joined Columbia University’s Dr. Melissa Lott on her fun podcast The Big Switch for a discussion they titled For the Love of Concrete. This was quite timely for our team given our prior and ongoing work on green cement and Washington’s industrial emissions. In preparation for the Clean Materials Manufacturing Summit we are analyzing the strategies and workforce opportunities and challenges for decarbonizing this critical industry, as well as pulp/paper; wood; aluminum; steel; concrete/cement; glass; and aerospace manufacturing.

So, lots of Rebecca Dell; worth every minute.

Understanding Russia and Energy

We recommend Chris Nelder’s Energy Transition Show in general, but we had no idea in early January when we listed to his fascinating two-part Transition in Russia series (Part 1 #162 and Part 2 #163) just how relevant these intreviews would be only a few weeks later when Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine. Nelder spoke to Georgetown Professor Than Gustafson on his new book, Klimat: Russia in the Age of Climate Change¸ about Russia’s attitude toward climate change, and how the nation will fare in the energy transition.

Episode #164, Political Economy of Energy Transitions, is also worth a listen. Nelder speaks to Peter Newell, a researcher at the University of Sussex in the UK, about his new book PowerShift: The Global Political Economy of Energy Transitions. The book presents key features of energy transitions in the global political economy and discusses the shifts in power relations required to put the world on a more sustainable path.

Petrochemicals, Grid-Edge Technologies, Commercial Energy Efficiency

Columbia University's Dr. Lott explored decarbonizing the heavy industries that produce everyday things in the Death of a Toaster, unpacking the carbon emissions embedded in everything around us with Chris Bataille, associate researcher at the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI) in Paris.

Lott followed up with Petrochemicals Part 1 in which she talked to Deborah Gordon, senior principal in the Climate Intelligence Program at the Rocky Mountain Institute, about how pervasive chemicals made from oil are in nearly everything from “plastics, medicines, clothes,toothpaste, even the insulation in your home.”

Lara Pierpoint guest hosted Catalyst for several episodes this quarter, and we found What the grid can learn from the internet to be quite worth the listen. Pierpoint interviewed Astrid Atkinson, a former senior Google engineer specializing in distributed networks, who is co-founder and CEO of a grid software company called Camus. They discussed how utilities must up their technology game to be able to communicate with distributed energy resources and how electric co-ops are testing new grid-edge technologies.

Roberts’ Volts podcast with Dr. Erin Mayfield was also a winner. Dr. Mayfield, a professor of engineering at Dartmouth University, led the extremely important employment study that was part of the seminal Net Zero America work finalized in October 2021. Roberts talked to Mayfield about the new round of modeling that the Zero Lab at Princeton’s Rapid Energy Policy Evaluation and Analysis Toolkit (REPEAT) project recently released. This is highly relevant to our work, where we would like to do a Net-Zero Northwest project modeled after Net Zero America.

We were very excited to open our email this past Monday and see Roberts had also talked to our colleague, Rob Harmon, about Metered Energy Efficiency Transaction Structure (MEETS), a creative and potentially transformational solution for making commercial energy efficiency pencil out. Great to hear two hometown boys geek out on how to scale up deep energy efficiency.

Equitable Job Creation, Industrial Policy, and Embodied Carbon

The Worker Institute at the Cornell School of Industrial and Labor Relations is partnering with the US Department of Labor-Women’s Bureau to produce a webinar series called Equity in Focus: Job Creation for a Just Society. We are keenly focused on equitable clean energy job creation so prioritize webinars on this topic when we see them. The first episode was excellent and we will watch for subsequent events.

Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF)’s webinar What a National Strategic-Industry Policy Should Look Like, was important for the research we are doing on clean industrial policies in advance of the Clean Materials Manufacturing Summit.

Electrify Now presented two webinars that were also directly on point with our industrial work: Clean Hydrogen – Blue vs Green Hydrogen and its role in our energy future and Carbon Sequestration - An overview of carbon capture and storage solutions. We are asked regularly about hydrogen and carbon capture and storage these days so it’s key to stay on top of these complicated and controversial decarbonization strategies.

The Regulatory Assistance Project (RAP) regularly produces worthwhile webinars, and Putting the Customer First: How States Can Keep Driving the Energy Transition was valuable to watch as national climate policy still fails to meet the challenge.

Understanding how buildings can manage electricity and interact with the grid is critically important so we watched the Smart Buildings Center’s two-part Executive Forum on Building Electrification & Grid-Interactive Efficient Buildings (Part1; Part 2).

Finally, ACEEE’s Tackling Embodied Carbon Together: Intersections of Buildings and Industry offered important insights into how to significantly reduce carbon emissions from building materials, such as steel and cement, through disclosure requirements.

Eileen V. Quigley

Founder & Executive Director
Eileen V. Quigley is Founder and Executive Director of the Clean Energy Transition Institute. Eileen spent seven years at Climate Solutions identifying the transition pathways off fossil fuel to a low-carbon future in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. As Director of Strategic Innovations, she oversaw New Energy Cities, Sustainable Advanced Fuels, and Northwest Biocarbon Initiative.
FULL BIO & OTHER POSTS

First Quarter DecarbCast

We work hard to stay on top of the latest technical and economic decarbonization developments and share what we are learning with our community. Here is a selection of some of the best podcasts and webinars the Clean Energy Transition Institute team engaged with during the first three months of 2022:

From Chemicals to Concrete: Rebecca Dell on Decarbonizing Industry

Rebecca Dell, program director for industry at ClimateWorks Foundation and author of the seminal paper, Build Clean: Industrial Policy for Climate and Justice, appeared on several of our favorite pods this quarter. Her commentary was particularly helpful to our work on decarbonizing industrial emissions and clean materials manufacturing.

First up on January 24, Shayle Kann talked to Dell about the many pathways to decarbonizing chemicals. Kann is a partner at Energy Impact Partners and his excellent podcast, Catalyst, which he produces in partnership with Canary Media, is not to be missed.

Next up, Dave Roberts of Volts interviewed Dell on a broad range of decarbonization issues for his February 11 podcast. This two-hour podcast covered decarbonization strategies for multiple industrial uses and is an excellent primer.

Then on February 24, Dell joined Columbia University’s Dr. Melissa Lott on her fun podcast The Big Switch for a discussion they titled For the Love of Concrete. This was quite timely for our team given our prior and ongoing work on green cement and Washington’s industrial emissions. In preparation for the Clean Materials Manufacturing Summit we are analyzing the strategies and workforce opportunities and challenges for decarbonizing this critical industry, as well as pulp/paper; wood; aluminum; steel; concrete/cement; glass; and aerospace manufacturing.

So, lots of Rebecca Dell; worth every minute.

Understanding Russia and Energy

We recommend Chris Nelder’s Energy Transition Show in general, but we had no idea in early January when we listed to his fascinating two-part Transition in Russia series (Part 1 #162 and Part 2 #163) just how relevant these intreviews would be only a few weeks later when Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine. Nelder spoke to Georgetown Professor Than Gustafson on his new book, Klimat: Russia in the Age of Climate Change¸ about Russia’s attitude toward climate change, and how the nation will fare in the energy transition.

Episode #164, Political Economy of Energy Transitions, is also worth a listen. Nelder speaks to Peter Newell, a researcher at the University of Sussex in the UK, about his new book PowerShift: The Global Political Economy of Energy Transitions. The book presents key features of energy transitions in the global political economy and discusses the shifts in power relations required to put the world on a more sustainable path.

Petrochemicals, Grid-Edge Technologies, Commercial Energy Efficiency

Columbia University's Dr. Lott explored decarbonizing the heavy industries that produce everyday things in the Death of a Toaster, unpacking the carbon emissions embedded in everything around us with Chris Bataille, associate researcher at the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI) in Paris.

Lott followed up with Petrochemicals Part 1 in which she talked to Deborah Gordon, senior principal in the Climate Intelligence Program at the Rocky Mountain Institute, about how pervasive chemicals made from oil are in nearly everything from “plastics, medicines, clothes,toothpaste, even the insulation in your home.”

Lara Pierpoint guest hosted Catalyst for several episodes this quarter, and we found What the grid can learn from the internet to be quite worth the listen. Pierpoint interviewed Astrid Atkinson, a former senior Google engineer specializing in distributed networks, who is co-founder and CEO of a grid software company called Camus. They discussed how utilities must up their technology game to be able to communicate with distributed energy resources and how electric co-ops are testing new grid-edge technologies.

Roberts’ Volts podcast with Dr. Erin Mayfield was also a winner. Dr. Mayfield, a professor of engineering at Dartmouth University, led the extremely important employment study that was part of the seminal Net Zero America work finalized in October 2021. Roberts talked to Mayfield about the new round of modeling that the Zero Lab at Princeton’s Rapid Energy Policy Evaluation and Analysis Toolkit (REPEAT) project recently released. This is highly relevant to our work, where we would like to do a Net-Zero Northwest project modeled after Net Zero America.

We were very excited to open our email this past Monday and see Roberts had also talked to our colleague, Rob Harmon, about Metered Energy Efficiency Transaction Structure (MEETS), a creative and potentially transformational solution for making commercial energy efficiency pencil out. Great to hear two hometown boys geek out on how to scale up deep energy efficiency.

Equitable Job Creation, Industrial Policy, and Embodied Carbon

The Worker Institute at the Cornell School of Industrial and Labor Relations is partnering with the US Department of Labor-Women’s Bureau to produce a webinar series called Equity in Focus: Job Creation for a Just Society. We are keenly focused on equitable clean energy job creation so prioritize webinars on this topic when we see them. The first episode was excellent and we will watch for subsequent events.

Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF)’s webinar What a National Strategic-Industry Policy Should Look Like, was important for the research we are doing on clean industrial policies in advance of the Clean Materials Manufacturing Summit.

Electrify Now presented two webinars that were also directly on point with our industrial work: Clean Hydrogen – Blue vs Green Hydrogen and its role in our energy future and Carbon Sequestration - An overview of carbon capture and storage solutions. We are asked regularly about hydrogen and carbon capture and storage these days so it’s key to stay on top of these complicated and controversial decarbonization strategies.

The Regulatory Assistance Project (RAP) regularly produces worthwhile webinars, and Putting the Customer First: How States Can Keep Driving the Energy Transition was valuable to watch as national climate policy still fails to meet the challenge.

Understanding how buildings can manage electricity and interact with the grid is critically important so we watched the Smart Buildings Center’s two-part Executive Forum on Building Electrification & Grid-Interactive Efficient Buildings (Part1; Part 2).

Finally, ACEEE’s Tackling Embodied Carbon Together: Intersections of Buildings and Industry offered important insights into how to significantly reduce carbon emissions from building materials, such as steel and cement, through disclosure requirements.

Eileen V. Quigley

Founder & Executive Director
Eileen V. Quigley is Founder and Executive Director of the Clean Energy Transition Institute. Eileen spent seven years at Climate Solutions identifying the transition pathways off fossil fuel to a low-carbon future in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington. As Director of Strategic Innovations, she oversaw New Energy Cities, Sustainable Advanced Fuels, and Northwest Biocarbon Initiative.
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