Other potentially viable SEI initiatives

Can this be a Massive Scaling SEI opportunity? A structured approach for qualification is suggested in the Base Mapping Tool in the invVEST Strategy document.
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Moderator: Probir Ghosh

Other potentially viable SEI initiatives

Postby Probir Ghosh » Fri Apr 24, 2009 11:25 am

Sustainable Energy is any energy generation, efficiency & conservation source where:

  • Resources are available to enable massive scaling to become a significant portion of energy generation, long term, preferably 100 years.
  • Low to zero Carbon footprint and in some cases negative carbon footprint is created.
  • We can reach and get below power parity by 2020 or earlier, compared to traditional fossil fuel energy generation it replaces.
  • No significant side effects to earth’s resources, direct or indirect happen.
  • Energy independence from one main region or country is fostered.
  • It helps fuel a long term vibrant economy and significant job opportunities.

Many of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation programs actually meet all five criteria now and should be implemented right now aggressively.

Solar Energy has a very low carbon footprint, but will fit this definition only if it is scaled massively from the current state of generating less than 0.01% of total energy to at least 10% by 2030 and becomes cheaper than Fossil Fuels it primarily replaces by 2020.

Wind, Geo Thermal, Ocean Wave energies can become significant sources of energy as long as it meets the six criteria.

Plug-in Battery & Fuel cell cars may have a very low carbon footprint , but have to be cheaper than gasoline it replaces and will need to scale massively by setting up infrastructure, support & recycling systems. It should constitute at least 5% of the car population by 2020 and 25% by 2030.

Coal meets the above criteria if various clean coal technologies can be made economically viable and there are no side effects from implanting CO2 and other GHG gases into the ground or elsewhere.

Nuclear already meets five of the six criteria today, if the expert panel in our virtual collaborative team can determine that there are no side effects:
  • will not lead to creation of mass weapons of destruction by rogue countries or terrorists
  • will not have any radioactive fallout or issues from waste fuels or operations

If Algae farms absorb more carbon than they produce in its lifecycle, it actually will have a negative carbon footprint. The key will again be if algae can get to a point in the foreseeable future where cost is lower than fossil fuels it replaces and its ability to scale massively.

We will find many very nontraditional companies entering the Sustainable Energy Initiative arena like Google, CISCO, Intel and broadband communication companies. If Google, CISCO, Intel, Verizon, AT&T can promote real-time high quality broadband virtual conferencing, we may find the need to travel and energy usage can be cut down very significantly. If all employees on average can telecommute from home 20% of the time by 2012 and 50% by 2020, we can cut down our energy needs exponentially in terms of fuel saved and in terms of energy and resources not needed any more for creating new office space.

For an indepth understanding, read invVEST Strategy (1.4mb PDF)
Probir Ghosh
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