High oil prices and growing worries about climate change have heightened interest in alternative and renewable energy sources, but these frequently cost more than fossil fuels. RAND has explored the feasibility of using renewable resources such as wind power and ethanol to reduce CO2 emissions and enhance energy security, and analyzed the likely effects of such technologies on consumer energy costs.
Research conducted within RAND Environment, Energy, and Economic Development focuses on environmental quality and regulation; energy resources and systems; water resources and systems; climate, natural hazards, and disasters; and innovation, entrepreneurship, and economic development.
As solar power remains more expensive than conventional sources of electricity in most parts of the world, demand for photovoltaic solar panels still primarily depends on government subsidies, says Keith Crane.
Energy expert Keith Crane discusses shifts in U.S. energy markets, their economic implications and effects on gasoline and electricity prices, and how these developments might affect climate change.
Instead of setting an arbitrary Production Tax Credit value, we could provide a tax credit based on the social value of clean electricity generation, writes Constantine Samaras.
Obama has championed an "all-of-the-above strategy" to develop every available source of American energy "while making sure we never have to choose between protecting our environment and strengthening our economy." Romney would not provide support for ventures in new energy technologies. RAND's research on renewable fuels, oil shale development, and fuel taxes provides options.
Technological development challenges suggest that it is highly unlikely that advanced approaches for producing hydrotreated renewable oils suitable for military applications will constitute an important fraction of the commercial fuel market until well beyond the next decade, writes Keith Crane.
The authors discuss the merit of conducting research with both members of the general public and with populations living near proposed carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) sites.
Reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) is an important social goal to mitigate climate change. A common mitigation paradigm is to consider strategy "wedges" that can be applied to different activities to achieve desired GHG reductions.
The use of biomass for energy production has increasingly been encouraged in the United States, in part motivated by the potential to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions relative to fossil fuels.
CUBE 2.0, an update of the 2010 release of the 1.0 version, allows users to estimate the "farm-to-gate" greenhouse gas emissions of biomass feedstocks for energy production, as well as the uncertainty in these emissions.
U.S. Army installation energy costs around the globe totaled more than $1.2 billion in 2010. Collaborating with energy utility companies could help the Army to decrease energy usage, lower costs, and meet legislative mandates. The benefits for utility companies include energy conservation and support for renewable energy technologies.
Explores how the Army can improve collaboration with utility companies to reduce energy consumption on its installations and help meet other Army energy goals.
The Qatar Foundation is establishing a national research institute to conduct energy, environment, and water research. This book recommends research priorities for the institute and reports on a survey of related research institutions in the region.
Biomass is an increasingly important source of electricity, heat, and liquid fuel. One near-term option for using it to generate electricity is to cofire biomass in coal-fired electricity plants. Factors to consider are plant-site modifications, changes in operations, costs, and logistical issues with delivering biomass to the plant.
This paper provides a framework for incorporating uncertainty analysis specifically into estimates of the life cycle GHG emissions from the production of biomass.
Document submitted on June 29, 2011 as an addendum to testimony presented before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on June 7, 2011.
Testimony presented before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on June 7, 2011.
Achieving the potential economic and national security benefits offered by alternative fuels requires that their domestic production must be an appreciable fraction of domestic demand for liquid fuels. Alternative fuels derived from oil shale and coal have the potential to meet that important criterion.
Testimony presented before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Subcommittee on Energy and Power on May 5, 2011.
U.S. power plants seek to diversify their fuel sources and biomass energy is a renewable resource that generally has lower life-cycle greenhouse-gas emissions than fossil fuels. This model estimates the cost and availability of biomass energy resources from U.S. agricultural lands from the perspective of an individual power plant.