WASHINGTON, Jan. 15, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) President and CEO Dr. Arshad Mansoor this week joined Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) CEO Jules Kortenhorst for a virtual "fireside chat" to discuss U.S. economy-wide decarbonization and opportunities to advance the energy transition under the Biden administration. Former Assistant Secretary and retired Vice Admiral of the U.S. Navy Dennis McGinn moderated the conversation.
"The U.S. is preparing to accelerate its energy transition under the Biden administration. And the timing for that, in my mind, is just right," observed Kortenhorst as he described the "four pillars" upon which a "green and sustainable" global energy economy can be built. "We need electrons as the cornerstone of the energy system of the future, but they need to be low-carbon. Energy efficiency needs to triple over the next 10 years to get to that very clean and efficient energy system of the future. We then need to use those efficient and clean electrons to electrify as much of the global economy as possible and develop and scale the low-carbon energy carriers needed to fuel the transition of hard-to-electrify sectors, such as heavy industry."
Mansoor acknowledged the fundamental necessity of these "four pillars" and underscored the importance of science and innovation in achieving emission reduction goals. But "technology on its own will not be enough to get us there," cautioned Mansoor. "Innovation and policy go hand-in-hand. An integrated approach to policymaking will yield the maximum benefit in terms of reduced cost of deploying decarbonization technologies. I consider an integrated approach to decarbonization and equitably valuing capacity and energy in the electric sector to be two of the major components to make the economic case for accelerating the energy transition quickly, profitably and socially equitably."
In closing, Mansoor and Kortenhurst agreed that achieving an affordable, reliable and equitable transition to a net-zero economy will require a shared commitment to investment in research and technological innovation. This requires a mutual understanding by utilities, regulators, policymakers and institutional investors of the concomitant economic incentive and scientific imperative to more rapidly reduce CO2 emissions in the electric power, transportation, buildings and industrial sectors.
The full recording of Tuesday's event – "Driving Decarbonization: A Virtual Fireside Chat" – is available here.
The Electric Power Research Institute, Inc. (EPRI, www.epri.com) conducts research and development relating to the generation, delivery and use of electricity for the benefit of the public. An independent, nonprofit organization, EPRI brings together its scientists and engineers as well as experts from academia and industry to help address challenges in electricity, including reliability, efficiency, health, safety and the environment. EPRI's members represent more than 90 percent of the electricity generated and delivered in the United States, and international participation extends to 40 countries. EPRI's principal offices and laboratories are in Palo Alto, Calif.; Charlotte, N.C.; Knoxville, Tenn.; and Lenox, Mass.
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SOURCE Electric Power Research Institute