I recently responded to a question on the National Journal blog, "What role should natural gas play in the United States?"
You can read more on the original blog post and other responses at the National Journal.
Here is my response:
As the nation’s largest landlord, fleet operator, and purchaser of goods and services, the federal government has both the opportunity and the responsibility to lead by example in moving the United States in a more sustainable direction.
Across the federal government, agencies are facing two imperatives: tighter budgets requiring them to find ways to cut costs and increasingly stringent sustainability mandates requiring them to seek out new ways to reduce their energy use and cut greenhouse gas emissions.
A C2ES report released today highlights exciting initiatives across the federal government where agencies are using information and communications technologies to meet these dual challenges.
Eileen Claussen's Statement on the Bipartisan Bill to Reduce Carbon Emissions and Develop Domestic Energy Resources
Statement of Eileen Claussen
President, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions
Sept. 20, 2012
The bipartisan bill introduced today by Sens. Kent Conrad, D-N.D.; Michael Enzi, R-Wyo.; and Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., is an important step toward expanding the use of captured carbon dioxide for enhanced oil recovery, a proven strategy that will boost domestic oil production, create jobs, spur economic growth, and reduce carbon emissions.
We applaud Senators Conrad, Enzi, and Rockefeller for introducing legislation to modify the existing Section 45Q Tax Credit for Carbon Dioxide Sequestration to enable its effective commercial use.
The bill reflects recommendations from the National Enhanced Oil Recovery Initiative (NEORI), a diverse coalition of stakeholders from industry, labor, state government, and environmental groups that was convened by C2ES and the Great Plains Institute. The proposed modifications to the 45Q tax credit are needed to advance important commercial CO2 capture projects now under development and to promote broader deployment of carbon capture utilization and storage technologies that will reduce the carbon footprint of fossil fuels.
We look forward to working with the Senators and others to see this bill enacted.
For more information, see NEORI’s 45Q recommendations and the NEORI participant list.
Contact Laura Rehrmann, 703-516-0621, firstname.lastname@example.org
Thirteen percent of Americans say they follow science; 65 percent say they follow sports.
Representatives of Major League Baseball, the National Football League, the National Hockey League and NASCAR gathered at the White House yesterday for a half-day conference on “Greening the Games.” The panelists talked about the fact that sports stadiums and arenas across the United States are cultural icons – think Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, the Superdome – and that they offer an extraordinary opportunity for an education in sustainability.
Learn more about the risks climate change poses to the Gulf Coast, how to fix the National Flood Insurance Program, and EPA's proposed greenhouse gas emissions standard.
As the nation's largest landlord, employer, fleet operator, and purchaser of goods and services, the federal government has the opportunity, if not the responsibility, to lead by example in moving our country in a more economically efficient and environmentally sustainable direction.
Faced with tightening budgets, agencies are looking for new ways to reduce costs and increase productivity, while at the same time meeting a growing list of Congressional and executive mandates to consume less energy and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Executive Order 13514 (Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance) requires each agency to develop a Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan that sets clear goals and implementation activities.
The expanded use of intelligent efficiency – the application of information and communication technology (ICT) solutions to reduce energy consumption – has become an important means of enabling agencies to achieve these multiple objectives. Recent technological developments have created new energy-saving opportunities in the areas of smarter buildings, electricity, transportation and travel substitution. In addition, mobility and collaboration tools offer many opportunities to transform the federal workplace while cutting energy use.
In September 2012, C2ES released a report, Leading by Example: Using Information and Communication Technologies to Achieve Federal Sustainability Goals, presenting eight case studies of federal agencies using smarter technologies to use less energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions while at the same time cutting costs and enhancing productivity. The eight case studies are:
- GSA's Prototype Alternative Workspace: Redesigning the Federal Workplace for the 21st Century
- Sustainability Base: Channeling NASA's Expertise to Create a High-Performance Building Here on Earth
- Defense Connect Online: Advancing Sustainability through Enhanced Collaboration and Communication Tools
- Shift to the Cloud: Achieving Efficiency through Cloud Computing and Data Center Consolidation
- Fleet Management at the Smithsonian: Using New Tools to Advance Sustainability and Efficiency
- Testing New Building Technologies at DoD and GSA: Advancing Energy-Saving Innovations
- Energy Savings at Sector San Juan: The Coast Guard's Innovative Shift to Clean Energy in Puerto Rico
- GSA's Print Management Initiatives: Cutting Costs and Saving Energy Through Smarter Printing
A forthcoming report will draw extensively from these case studies and more broadly discuss the role of ICT in meeting sustainability objectives across the federal government.
The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) has launched a program examining how information and communications technologies (ICT) help organizations, such as federal agencies, perform their functions in a leaner, more efficient and sustainable manner.
Recent studies suggest that ICT applications can reduce our nation's energy use 12 to 22 percent by 2020.
As the largest consumer of energy, the U.S. federal government is uniquely positioned to capture the benefits from ICT and federal agencies are adopting ICT solutions to reduce their energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, and costs. A 2012 C2ES report, Leading by Example: Using Information and Communications Technology to Achieve Federal Sustainability Goals highlights eight case studies detailing examples of agencies implementing ICT solutions. A forthcoming report looks at the initial progress in adopting ICT solutions across the federal government and the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead.
In addition, C2ES is a founding member of a new global partnership – ICT for Sustainable Energy (ISEP) – aimed at improving energy efficiency and curbing greenhouse gas emissions through the use of information and communication technologies to achieve the goals of the UN's Sustainable Energy For All (SE4All) initiative.
For more information about the project, or questions and comments, please contact email@example.com.
June 25, 2012
Contact: Rebecca Matulka, 703-516-0621, firstname.lastname@example.org
State Transportation Officials Meet in Raleigh to Pave Way for Plug-in Electric Vehicles
Transportation officials from eight states are meeting today and tomorrow in Raleigh to develop state-level strategies for accelerating the deployment of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs).
The two-day workshop is being co-organized by the Washington State Department of Transportation and the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) as part of a broader effort with industry, environmentalists, and policymakers to advance PEVs nationwide. The workshop is being hosted by the city of Raleigh at the Raleigh Convention Center. Speakers include North Carolina Transportation Secretary Gene Conti and Raleigh Mayor Pro Tem Russ Stephenson.
Officials from Arizona, California, Georgia, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Washington, and Wisconsin and from the U.S. Department of Transportation will examine how state transportations departments can help ensure the smooth introduction of the new infrastructure needed for charging electric vehicles. Other participants include representatives of Raleigh and other cities taking the lead on introducing PEVs.
“PEVs are a transformative technology—they offer us a way reduce both our reliance on imported oil and our carbon footprint,” said Judi Greenwald, C2ES’s vice president for technology and innovation. “But to realize this potential, a broad range of stakeholders and policymakers will need to work together. We’re very pleased to be working with these states and others to help make sure that happens.”
"Our goal for this project is to not only help DOTs define their role with respect to electric vehicles, but to create a community of practice so that we can learn from each other and share resources as this rapidly evolving technology comes into the market," said Jeff Doyle, director of public/private partnerships at the Washington State Department of Transportation.
The Raleigh workshop will lead to a new “self-assessment” tool to help state transportation planners understand PEV needs in their states and develop cost-effective strategies to meet them. It follows a similar workshop in March at the University of California, Berkeley.
The workshop is part of a broader C2ES initiative implementing the recommendations of its PEV Dialogue Group, which includes automakers, electric utilities, policy makers, environmental groups and others. In March, the group released An Action Plan to Integrate Plug-in Electric Vehicles with the U.S. Electrical Grid, which outlines steps to safeguard grid reliability while ensuring that PEV owners can plug in at home and on the road. Washington State and Raleigh both participate in the PEV Dialogue Group.
C2ES is also working with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities Program to help communities across the country assess PEV-related needs such as revising codes and updating permitting processes to smooth the installation of residential and commercial charging stations.
Some PEVs such as the Nissan Leaf run exclusively on rechargeable batteries; others such as the GM Volt couple batteries with gasoline engines that extend their range to that of a conventional vehicle. More than 30,000 PEVs have been sold in the United States since January 2011. Nearly 10 companies now have PEVs on the road, and over the next year or two, all of the major automakers plan to offer them.
More information on this project and the PEV Dialogue Group Initiative is available at www.c2es.org/initiatives/pev.
The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) is an independent non-profit, non-partisan organization promoting strong policy and action to address the twin challenges of energy and climate change. Launched in November 2011, C2ES is the successor to the Pew Center on Global Climate Change, long recognized in the United States and abroad as an influential and pragmatic voice on climate issues. C2ES is led by Eileen Claussen, who previously led the Pew Center and is the former U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs.
As Rio+20 negotiators rush to complete a consolidated text of outcomes before heads of state begin arriving tomorrow, participants at hundreds of side events are calling on business and government to take stronger action on clean energy, poverty elimination, food security, oceans, sustainable cities, green technology development, education, and more.
On Sunday at the U.S. Center pavilion, C2ES and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) convened a panel of companies, small-business innovators, and business representatives highlighting the critical roles played by each in promoting low-carbon innovation and sustainable development.
Opportunities for low-carbon innovation are growing, driven by policy changes, market shifts, and continued growth in energy demand, particularly in developing countries. This Sunday in Rio de Janeiro, ahead of the UN’s “Rio+20” Conference on Sustainable Development, C2ES will have a chance to share what it’s learned about low-carbon innovation with partners from around the world.
With the Global Environment Facility (GEF), we will convene a panel of companies (Johnson Controls, DuPont), small-business innovators (from the Cleantech Open), and government and business representatives (from UNIDO and ABDI) to share stories and lessons from the front lines of clean-tech entrepreneurship. The event, to be held at the U.S. Center pavilion, will examine the keys to successful low-carbon innovation, and the benefits for climate mitigation and adaptation, energy security, resource efficiency, and job creation.