This course examines alternative pathways for economies around the world to achieve deep decarbonization within a couple of decades. The overall perspective is to analyze the global decarbonization process at the intersection of technological improvements, financial fundamentals and the parameters set by public policies.The first part of the course will be concerned with the science and the political economy of climate change, greenhouse gas emissions and the proliferation of net-zero pledges by governments and corporations. Included in this part is a closer look at countries for which the production and export of fossil fuels is a key economic activity. We then turn to the competitiveness of carbon-free or low-carbon technologies in different segments of the economy, including i) power generation, ii) energy storage, iii) transportation, iv) industrial production and v) food and Ag Tech. The final part of the course turns to the emergence of energy technologies with future commercial potential, including hydrogen, fission/fusion, carbon capture and utilization and synthetic hydrocarbons. The course will rely on lectures from each of the three instructors, guest presentations and select case studies.
Instructors: Reichelstein, S. (PI) ; Rogers, M. (SI) ; Wood, D. (SI)