Naomi Pena

Scenarios for U.S. Electricity in 2030

Scenarios for U.S. Electricity in 2030

May 2014

By Manik Roy, Ph.D

Download the brief (PDF)

Affordable reliable electricity is a central pillar of modern life. At the same time, the generation of electricity is responsible for nearly 40 percent of U.S. carbon dioxide emissions. Advances in technology and environmental policy are driving enormous change in the power sector, which will alter its ability to provide affordable and environmentally-sustainable electricity for decades to come. The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) has gathered input from a diverse group of business, labor, consumer, and environmental experts to develop a set of scenarios describing the extent to which U.S. electricity in 2030 could be affordable, reliable, safe, and environmentally sound. By articulating the challenges and opportunities that the next few years may bring, C2ES hopes to equip the stakeholders to better address them.

 

Naomi Pena
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Biofuels for Transportation: A Climate Perspective

Biofuels Cover

Biofuels for Transportation: A Climate Perspective

Prepared by the Pew Center on Global Climate Change
June 2008

By:
Naomi Pena
Pew Center on Global Climate Change

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Executive Summary

As the United States seeks to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from motor vehicles and to lessen its dependence on imported oil, biofuels are gaining increasing attention as one possible solution. This paper offers an introduction to the current state of play for biofuels: the technologies used in their production, their GHG emissions, and associated policy issues.

The amount of emission reductions that can be achieved through the use of biofuels varies widely, depending on choices made at each step from feedstock selection and production through final fuel use.

Technologies exist today to produce a wide variety of biofuels from a wide range of feedstocks. However, currently commercial options are limited to ethanol made from cornstarch or sugarcane, and biodiesel made from soybean or palm oil seeds. Current research and development focuses on lowering biofuel costs, GHG emissions, and land and water resource needs, and on improving compatibility with fuel distribution systems and vehicle engines. Policy priorities should be aligned with these R&D objectives as well as with other policies addressing climate, agriculture, forestlands and international trade.

The critical issue when considering the climate benefits of biofuels is each fuel’s GHG profile—not whether it is “renewable” or “fossil-fuel”-based. Also, vehicle efficiency is especially important for biofuels because less overall fuel demand means less competition with other uses for land and biomass. Therefore, policies to encourage further development and use of biofuels for climate-related purposes should focus on their GHG profiles and on increased vehicle efficiency. In addition to climate change and energy security, the opportunity to support the agricultural sector is an extremely important and powerful motivation for pursuing biofuels worldwide. However, any benefits to the agricultural sector must be weighed against impacts on food prices and land use, both of which are also major international concerns.

About the Author

Naomi Pena holds a Masters in City and Regional Planning, environmental focus, from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Her career has been devoted to reconciling economic and environmental objectives through analysis of policy, regulatory, and project options. Ms. Pena worked at the Pew Center on Global Climate Change, C2ES's predecessor organization, for nine years before moving to Austria, where she currently works at the Joanneum Research Institute.

In addition to analyzing general policy options to address climate change, she has specialized in the role of land use and land use change (LULUCF) in climate change mitigation, biofuels as a mechanism to address climate change, and technologies and policies needed to capture and store in geologic formations the carbon dioxide that results from electricity generation and other industrial processes. Prior to working at the Pew Center, Ms. Pena worked internationally and domestically at a number of governmental and private institutions.

Naomi Pena
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Coal Initiative Series: A Trust Fund Approach to Accelerating Deployment of CCS: Options and Considerations

 

Trust Fund Approach

Coal Initiative Series White Paper:

A Trust Fund Approach to Accelerating Deployment of CCS: Options and Considerations

Download the full white paper (pdf)

Prepared for the Pew Center on Global Climate Change
January 2008

By:
Naomi Pena, Pew Center on Global Climate Change
Edward S. Rubin, Carnegie Mellon University

A Trust Fund Approach to Accelerating Deployment of CCS: Options and Considerations is the second in a series of Pew Center papers that explore strategies for addressing CO2 emissions from using coal to provide electricity.

This paper describes key elements of an administrative structure that could efficiently and effectively manage a program to accelerate deployment of carbon capture and storage at coal-fueled electric power plants.

Edward S. Rubin
Naomi Pena
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