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Energy efficiency offers win-win for climate, health, and ecosystems

A potential increase in metal consumption emerges as only concern in a broad-based investigation of the clean-energy transition The history of environmental protection is full of unforeseen consequences: taller chimneys only led to pollutants spreading wide and far, and safe refrigerants replacing hydrocarbons turned out to damage the ozone hole. How can we ensure that technologies we employ to reduce greenhouse gas emissions do not give rise to the next generation of problems? Protecting the [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:06+00:00 June 11th, 2017|New Research|0 Comments

How to force down the US climate impact

While Donald Trump withdraws the US from the Paris climate agreement, the world has tools to reduce the US carbon footprint As the world is in shock about Donald Trump’s erratic but not unexpected decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord, reactions range from the denial of the momentous consequences of this decision through dismay to desperate calls for retaliation. It is clear, this decision unmistakably indicates that the United States [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 June 2nd, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Does ‘green energy’ have hidden health and environmental costs?

Edgar Hertwich, Yale University; Anders Arvesen, Norwegian University of Science and Technology; Sangwon Suh, University of California, Santa Barbara, and Thomas Gibon, Norwegian University of Science and Technology There are a number of available low-carbon technologies to generate electricity. But are they really better than fossil fuels and nuclear power? To answer that question, one needs to compare not just the emissions of different power sources but also the health benefits and the threats to [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 March 21st, 2017|New Research|0 Comments

The Carbon Footprint of Capital

We think of capital, the assets we use in production, as heavy: machines, buildings, infrastructure, trucks and railroads. Being composed mostly of cement and steel, we would expect their production to cause a lot of greenhouse gas emissions. In a new paper, we offer a first detailed analysis of the carbon footprint of gross fixed capital formation across countries and sectors. The picture that emerges is interesting because of some small surprises. Share of [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 January 11th, 2017|New Research|0 Comments

Alternative climate theory in shatters

An alternative theory for climate change based on the influence of cosmic radiation lead to prominent predictions of an imminent cooling of global temperatures. Three years after the book by Fritz Vahrenholt and Sebastian Lüning was a bestseller in Germany and translated into English, its predictions - popular with climate sceptics also in the US -  have been shown to be false. Instead of a rapid cooling since the publication of the book, the world has experienced new temperature records. [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 January 27th, 2016|Scientific Issues|2 Comments

Industrial Ecology – Reflexions

The entire team of PhD students, PostDocs and professors on the steps of the main building, 17 October 2014 In 2003, I moved to Trondheim to become Director of the Industrial Ecology Programme (IndEcol) of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). In 2015, I have moved on to head the Center for Industrial Ecology at Yale University, following Tom Graedel, the founding president of our society. This transition provides an occasion [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 September 4th, 2015|Reflexions|0 Comments

Carbon pricing improves economics of energy

The Economics of Energy – What is the cost-effectiveness of energy and climate policies?  In a panel debate with key European policy makers hosted by GE and organized by ScienceBusiness; I emphasized the need to more systematically internalize environmental costs, which we have enumerated in recent scientific work. The social and economic benefits of modern energy are tremendous. While two billion people still lack access to clean cooking fuels and one billion lacks access to [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 January 21st, 2015|Reflexions|0 Comments

We can reach 2°C if we *replace* polluting technology

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change shows that hope is not forsaken: rigorous climate politics locally and nationally has spurred development of new technology sooner than expected. Increased pressure in the pursuit of climate protection is still required to reach the 2°C Target. Carbon Budget: Trillion tons of CO2 The report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on the climate climate system launched last year has a clear message: emitting more than one trillion [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 November 15th, 2014|Reflexions|0 Comments

Breathe easier with renewable energy

If we want to limit air pollution and reduce greenhouse gas emissions while meeting unmet demand in developing countries, renewable electricity is a promising option, as our new research shows. By Edgar Hertwich, Thomas Gibon and Anders Arvesen, NTNU The use of fossil energy sources has made it possible for cities, population and prosperity to grow. It has also led to the pollution of air, water and soil. The main product of the combustion of [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 October 14th, 2014|New Research|0 Comments

What’s new in the IPCC report

After 4 years of intensive work, the fifth assessment report of climate change by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has finally been published. It says that it is urgent to begin reducing emissions, otherwise we will not be able to stay below the articulated limit of two degree temperature rise. Sure, but that was already the main message of the fourth asssessment report in 2007. Having contributed to this report as a lead [...]

By | 2017-11-08T21:16:07+00:00 April 13th, 2014|Scientific Issues|1 Comment