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Seeing through the Fog -. Climate & Energy in the 21st Century. Presentation at SULI July 12, 2007 Burton Richter Freeman Spogli Institute of International Studies Senior Fellow Paul Pigott Professor in the Physical Sciences Emeritus Stanford University Former Director

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Presentation Transcript
slide1
Seeing through the Fog -

Climate & Energy in the 21st Century

Presentation at

SULI

July 12, 2007

Burton Richter

Freeman Spogli Institute of International Studies Senior Fellow

Paul Pigott Professor in the Physical Sciences Emeritus

Stanford University

Former Director

Stanford Linear Accelerator Center

slide2
Greenhouse

Gases

Atmosphere

Sunlight

mauna loa hawaii
Mauna Loa, Hawaii

Source: Dave Keeling and Tim Whorf (Scripps Institution of Oceanography)

primary power requirements for 2050 for scenarios stabilizing co 2 at 450 ppm and 550 ppm
Primary Power Requirements for 2050 for Scenarios Stabilizing CO2 at 450 ppm and 550 ppm

M. Hoffert, et al., Nature, 395, p881, (Oct 20, 1998)

ready for large scale deployment now
CARBON FREE ENERGYReady for Large-Scale Deployment Now

Conservation and Efficiency.

Nuclear for Baseload Application.

Ready for Limited Deployment Now

Solar for Daytime Use.

Wind with Back up from Others.

slide16
Carbon Dioxide Intensity and Per Capita CO2 Emissions -- 2001

(Fossil Fuel Combustion Only)

25.00

United States

20.00

Netherlands

Australia

Canada

15.00

Belgium

Tons of CO2 per person

California

Denmark

Germany

10.00

Austria

Japan

New

S. Korea

Zealand

Italy

Switzerland

France

5.00

Mexico

0.00

0.00

0.10

0.20

0.30

0.40

0.50

0.60

0.70

0.80

0.90

1.00

intensity (tons of CO2 per 2000 US Dollar)

peak load vs base load
Peak Load vs. Base Load

Peak Load

Base Load

the nuclear critics
The Nuclear Critics
  • It can’t compete in the market place.
  • It is too dangerous.
  • We don’t know what to do with spent fuel.
  • Proliferation risk is too big to accept.
nuclear accidents
Nuclear Accidents

Chernobyl (1986) – World’s Worst

Reactor type not used outside of old Soviet bloc(can become unstable)

Operators moved into unstable region and disabled all safety systems.

Three Mile Island (1979) – A Partial Core Meltdown

LWRs are not vulnerable to instabilities

All LWRs have containment building

Radiation in region near TMI about 10 mr.

New LWRs have even more safety systems.

internationalize the fuel cycle
Internationalize the Fuel Cycle

Supplier States: Enrich Uranium

Take back spent fuel

Reprocess to separate Actinides

Burn Actinides in “Fast Spectrum” reactors

User States: Pay for reactors

Pay for enriched fuel

Pay for treatment of spent fuel (?)

a transmutation schematics with lwr recycle
LWR

Separation

Fast System

Separation

Separation

Plant

(one for every 7

-

8 LWRs)

Plant

Plant

Reproce

ss

ed

Fuel

Actinides

Actinides

U&FF

U&FF

U&FF

Fast System

LWR

Actinides

(a) Transmutation Schematics with LWR Recycle

(b) Without LWR Recycle

slide30
Coal

Largest Fossil Fuel Resource

US & China each have about 25% of world resources

IF CO2 emitted can be captured ad safely stored underground, problem of reducing Greenhouse Gas emissions is much easier.

co 2 sequestration
CO2 Sequestration
  • Most study has been on CO2 injection into underground reservoirs.
  • Capacity not well known
futuregen
FutureGen

$1 Billion Industry-Government Partnership to Generate Electricity & Sequester the CO-2

slide33
Wind
  • Commercially viable now (with 1.6¢/kw-hr subsidy).
  • Nationally about 5000 Megawatts of installed capacity (2500 in CA).
  • But, the wind does not blow all the time and average energy delivered is about 20% of capacity.
  • Wind cannot be “base load” power until an energy storage mechanism is found.
slide34
100-Mile Circle

Altamont Pass

Wind Farm

slide35
EON-NETZ (GERMANY) WIND POWER VARIABILITY

AVERAGE IS 20% OF INSTALLED WIND CAPACITY

solar photovoltaic
Solar Photovoltaic
  • Expensive but costs are coming down.
  • Also has a storage problem (day-night, clouds, etc.)
  • Some places solar can be important.
  • In U.S. solar is negligible (less than 10% of wind, mostly in CA).
other renewables
Other Renewables
  • Big Hydroelectric: About 50% developed world wide.
  • Geothermal: California, Philippines, and New Zealand are the largest (CA ≈ 1.5 Gigawatts).
  • Bio Fuel: Not big yet.
conclusion
Conclusion
  • Global Warming is real and human activity is the driver.
  • Not clear how bad it will be with no action, but I have told my kids to move to Canada.
  • We can do something to limit the effects.
  • The sooner we start the easier it will be.
conclusion1
Conclusion
  • Best incentives for action are those that allow industry to make more money by doing the right thing.
  • Carrots and sticks in combination are required.
  • The economy as a whole will benefit, but some powerful interests will not.
  • It is not hard to know what to do, but very hard to get it done.
slide44
Comparison of Life-Cycle Emissions

Source: "Life-Cycle Assessment of Electricity Generation Systems and Applications for Climate Change Policy Analysis," Paul J. Meier, University of Wisconsin-Madison, August, 2002.

some comparative electricity generating cost projections for year 2010 on
Some Comparative Electricity Generating Cost Projections for Year 2010 on

US 2003 cents/kWh, Discount rate 5%, 40 year lifetime, 85% load factor.Source: OECD/IEA NEA 2005.

public health impacts per twh
Public Health Impacts per TWh*

*Kerwitt et al., “Risk Analysis” Vol. 18, No. 4 (1998).

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