News and Events
The Joint Institute for Strategic Energy Analysis (JISEA) increases the impact of its analysis by staying engaged in and helping to shape the global energy dialogue. News about JISEA, JISEA leadership, and JISEA partners is highlighted below.
May 4 Webinar Discusses Spatiotemporal Considerations in Energy Decisions
Energy-related projects are developed in evolving natural and political environments, and their impacts and economics are neither fixed in time nor distributed evenly in space. Energy and environmental research has often focused on snapshots of particular regions, as many evaluation tools do not consider spatiotemporal factors. The gap in understanding such factors poses a significant challenge for those evaluating energy decisions. For example, the water-energy nexus becomes increasingly significant for decision support when local resources are scarce, yet technology assessments typically do not consider spatiotemporal variability across regions. The costs associated with environmental mitigation can and often do differ by region as well as over time. Climate-related policies are developed according to a region's political influences even as greenhouse gas emissions vary geographically according to several factors, such as available resources, the technology in use, the vintage of the existing infrastructure, and local climate. Related challenges involve comparing the land use of energy technologies when impacts are locally dependent and comparing spatial requirements of renewable and non-renewable projects over time. In this webinar, we will discuss a suite of emerging approaches covering climate, water, and land with the goal of overcoming some of these challenges.
Dr. Sarah Marie Jordaan is an Assistant Professor of Energy Policy and Politics at the University of Calgary. She has over a decade of experience researching energy and the environment with award winning publications on climate policy and the water implications of energy technologies. Her foundations in government and public policy were strengthened at Harvard University with the Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group at the Kennedy School of Government and she gained greater insight into climate science at the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences. She has held positions with the Electric Power Research Institute, the Laboratory on International Law and Regulation at the University of California, San Diego, and the Ocean Sciences Center at the Memorial University of Newfoundland. She earned her Ph.D. in 2010 at the University of Calgary in Environmental Design at the Institute for Sustainable Energy, Economy, and Environment. Her Bachelor's degree is in Physics with a minor in Computer Science from Memorial University.
April 20 Webinar Explores Environmental, Economic, and Technological Effects of Methane Emissions and Abatement
Methane accounts for approximately 10% of greenhouse gas emissions, and one-quarter of those emissions come from the natural gas sector. This Pathways to Decarbonization webinar on April 20 will review JISEA's work to illuminate areas of opportunity for abatement and the economic effects of various abatement scenarios. The presenters will discuss methods of estimating methane emissions from the natural gas sector and opportunities for improving these approaches, the economic potential of methane reduction, and opportunities for cost-effective emissions reduction throughout the natural gas supply chain.
Garvin Heath is a senior scientist at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). His areas of expertise include life cycle assessment, sustainability analysis, air quality modeling, and exposure assessment. He was an author of JISEA's first major natural gas report in 2011, Natural Gas and the Transformation of the U.S. Energy Sector: Electricity. His other research interests include health and environmental impacts of energy technologies.
Ethan Warner is an energy systems analyst at NREL. His areas of expertise include life cycle assessment, system dynamics modeling, energy policy. His research interests encompass systems modeling and sustainable analysis, especially focused on increasing understanding of the interconnections between technology supply chains, the economy, and the environment.
David Keyser is research analyst at NREL. His areas of expertise include economic impact studies, time series analysis, and analysis of labor and demographic data. His research interests span static and dynamic economic impact models, labor data estimation, econometric modeling and forecasting, and regional economics.
April 13 Webinar to Provide Insights on Natural Gas, Renewable Energy, and the Evolving Power Sector
April 13, 2016 — Natural gas—in combination with other technologies, practices, and policies—is fundamentally reshaping the U.S. power sector. On April 13 at 10 a.m. MDT, researchers from the Joint Institute for Strategic Energy Analysis (JISEA) will present results from three recent studies on natural gas and the U.S. power sector. The first study reviews regional and sectoral trends of natural gas use in the power sector. The second presents scenarios of natural gas as a "bridge" to a decarbonized power system and explores the question of how long we can continue to produce electricity from gas while staying on a path toward long-term climate sustainability. The third study focuses on potential synergies of natural gas and renewable energy in a two-part analysis: the first summarizes key takeaways from a series of regional stakeholder meetings that focused on challenges and opportunities of pairing renewables with natural gas, while the second quantifies the value proposition of investing in the two sources of energy together in specific applications. The presentations will be followed by a question and answer session with the audience. View slides.
Second Report in JISEA Monograph Series Explores Natural Gas as a Bridge to Sustainability
February 16, 2016 — In the second in a monograph series, JISEA examines the role of natural gas as increasingly strict carbon emission targets are imposed on the electricity sector. Do electricity sector trends mean that natural gas can serve as a bridge fuel, replacing the more carbon-intense coal generation in the near term and eventually phasing down in favor of zero-carbon emission resources? This analysis indicates that the answer may depend on the price of natural gas and the level of carbon reduction targets in place. Learn more about the report.
Arent: Let's Get Gas Right
December 15, 2015 — In a new blog post for the Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation, JISEA executive director Doug Arent discusses possible synergies between renewable energy and natural gas. "While the two resources were historically viewed as competitors, natural gas and renewables are increasingly recognized as complementary," says Arent. Read the full blog here.
First Report in New JISEA Monograph Series Explores Trends in Natural Gas and the U.S. Electricity Sector
October 14, 2015 — JISEA's latest report provides a high-level view of recent trends in the U.S. electricity sector, and how natural gas is affecting policy, operational, and investment decisions therein. This report is the first in a monograph series focusing on natural gas and the electricity sector. A second monograph will explore the question of natural gas as a bridge to a more sustainable electricity sector, and a third will consider the flexibility attributes that natural gas can offer to electric power sectors around the world. Learn more about the report.
Jill Engel-Cox Brings 25 Years of Clean Energy Experience to JISEA and the Clean Energy Manufacturing Analysis Center
October 5, 2015 — Jill Engel-Cox joins JISEA today as deputy director. In this role, Engel-Cox will also serve as program director of the Clean Energy Manufacturing Analysis Center (CEMAC). Engel-Cox brings a wide array of clean energy technology experience to JISEA. As deputy director, Engel-Cox will define and lead JISEA analytical activities and help develop and administer programs. "I am excited to welcome Jill to JISEA and CEMAC. Her expertise is a natural fit for JISEA, and the entire JISEA community is looking forward to her contributions," said Doug Arent, executive director of JISEA. Engel-Cox has been an engineer, researcher, program manager, and strategic planner for a diverse suite of renewable energy, clean technology, and environmental programs. Most recently, Engel-Cox was the director of international research and development planning at Battelle. She holds a doctoral degree in environmental science from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and a master's degree in mechanical engineering from Colorado State University. Read Jill Engel-Cox's full bio.
Energy Institute at the University of Texas at Austin Joins JISEA as Research Affiliate
August 17, 2015 — JISEA welcomes its newest Research Affiliate: the Energy Institute at The University of Texas at Austin. The Institute leverages the expertise of faculty to study critical energy policy questions, and is dedicated to broadening the educational experience of students by creating a community of scholars around energy issues of importance to Texas, the nation, and the world. "The UT Energy Institute's energy policy research and analysis complements JISEA's mission to guide the transformation of the global energy economy," said Doug Arent, JISEA's executive director. "The Institute's expertise on the energy/water nexus and energy economics specifically will valuably augment JISEA's capabilities in these areas."
"The UT Energy Institute and JISEA are uniquely positioned to inform global energy policy decisions," said the Energy Institute's deputy director Michael Webber. "We are excited to see what we can do together."
JISEA's Work Highlighted in NREL's Continuum Magazine
July 13, 2015 — A new article in the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL's) Continuum Magazine spotlights JISEA's work on natural gas and renewable energy synergies. "JISEA…has the credibility and prestige to gather the most influential stakeholders and thought leaders for lively exchanges on the dynamics, issues, and opportunities facing the natural gas and renewable energy industries," the article says. Read the full article.
Natural gas and renewable energy can help contribute to a low-carbon, resilient, and reliable electrical grid, say energy systems stakeholders
May 4, 2015 — A new JISEA report, Pathways to Decarbonization: Natural Gas and Renewable Energy: Lessons Learned from Energy System Stakeholders, captures key insights from the workshop series, Synergies of Natural Gas and Renewable Energy: 360 Degrees of Opportunity. The workshops, convened by JISEA in collaboration with the Center for the New Energy Economy and the Gas Technology Institute, explored natural gas (NG) and renewable energy (RE) synergies in the U.S. power sector. The report also details results of supporting economic valuation analyses conducted by JISEA researchers that quantify the value proposition of investing in NG and RE together as complements. The analysis finds that from a system-wide perspective, NG-RE synergies offer portfolio risk-reducing benefits. A key driver for NG and RE synergies will be the ability to operate systems in a way that creates value for the customer, such as by providing more reliable, resilient, and affordable service.
Arent Named to Sustainability Editorial Board
May 5, 2015 — JISEA's Doug Arent has joined the editorial board of the journal Sustainability. Arent joins internationally-renowned experts on the "Energy Sustainability" section board. Sustainability addresses environmental, cultural, economic, and social sustainability of human beings.