Rice Energy Program
"The Rice Energy Program is supporting an initiative to explore environmentally sustainable and economically sound ways to control and reduce atmospheric greenhouse gases. By working together with informed parties in the public and private sectors, policy makers can build upon existing tools to quantify and assess the risks of climate change and atmospheric pollution and recommend appropriate economically favorable and scientifically proven technologies for reducing or capturing and sequestering greenhouse gases such as suspended particulate matter, nitrous oxides, sulfur dioxide, methane, and atmospheric carbon dioxide. The greater Houston-Gulf coast area is ideally positioned to take the lead in developing an integrated program of approaches to reduce atmospheric greenhouse gases. A large number of energy firms have facilities in the region and existing infrastructure for carbon management, trading and commercial use. The high energy consumption and emissions in the region’s highly populated urban areas provides the ideal natural environment for employing terrestrial, oceanic, and geologic carbon management and reduction projects.
Energy and global climate change are two of the biggest challenges the world must face in the 21st century. The two challenges are not necessarily incompatible. A solution to the energy problem can help improve global climate as well as help solve other pressing world problems such as clean water supply, adequate food production, poverty, and conflict over natural resources. The heavy concentration of oil and gas resources in the Middle East, combined with the possible environmental impacts rising greenhouse gas emissions, has raised an interest in the development of new highly efficient, clean energy technologies and other greenhouse gas-management technologies that provide clean, affordable, sustainable, and universally available energy are essential to sustainable development. Developing new, green house gases-free sources of energy will not only help to mitigate potentially disastrous climate change, but it will also have positive national security, energy security, and economic implications for the United States.
The Rice Energy program, operating under the direction of the Baker Institute, in collaboration with the Energy and Environmental Systems Institute (EESI) and the department of Earth Sciences, has organized a scholarly study group on this pressing policy topic and plans to expand its research activities in this important area of study. The study group is engaged in multi-disciplinary research on public policy and science and technology research for employing terrestrial, oceanic and geologic carbon management as well as convergent technologies that will use energy more efficiently, reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The study group is composed of faculty and fellows from the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, the Richard E. Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology, the Energy and Environmental Systems Institute, and the departments of Earth Science, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Economics, Chemical Engineering, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and The Jones Graduate School of Management."
Neal Lane & Ron Sass
Research Findings are available on the following pages:
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Conference Report: Beyond Science: The Economics and Politics of Responding to Climate Change
Paper: Controls on Natural Carbon Fluxes within the Earth System - Dr. Carrie Masiello, Rice University