SRI International’s Ripudaman Malhotra to Present Keynote Address on Practical Steps to a Green U.S. Energy Policy at Greentech Innovations Conference
SRI International, an independent nonprofit research and development organization, today announced that Ripudaman Malhotra, associate director of SRI’s Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory, will deliver the keynote address at the Greentech Innovations Conference, in New York on November 18, 2008.
Malhotra’s address will examine the steps needed for the United States to address the “Three E’s” effectively: environment (including climate), economy, and energy security. He will examine the complexities of today’s energy challenges, including potential problems that can arise when alternative energy is not part of a comprehensive energy plan. For example, do biofuels address energy security concerns, but then lead to disruptions in the food supply and environmental degradation?
Developing a practical energy policy starts with an understanding of the scale of the problem. According to Malhotra, “Given the scale of our energy needs, a realistic national energy plan must include all of our energy alternatives along with a comprehensive innovation plan to create the low-cost energy that our economy requires.”
Malhotra will also present suggestions for a standardized way to talk about energy challenges. “Units such as terawatts, joules and BTUs mean little to the public and our policy makers, adding confusion to an already difficult topic.”
To help address the confusion, Malhotra will propose that global energy usage is expressed in “cubic mile of oil” (CMO) units, a term coined by the late Hew Crane when he was a colleague at SRI. In his talk, Malhotra will detail how the CMO framework can help inform consumers and policy makers about the vast scale of the energy challenge, which no single energy source can address.
Expressing energy usage in CMO units provides a clear way for all energy sources to be compared. The entire world currently uses the equivalent of 3.0 CMO units per year. Approximately one-fourth of the total is used by the United States. If current trends continue, the world will be using over 9 CMO by 2050. Green technologies can help increase the supply side by developing affordable wind and solar energy, as well as reduce the demand side through increased efficiency and conservation. However, the scale of the problem is so huge that green technologies are likely to make only limited impact in the interim, and therefore coal, oil, and gas will not be replaced anytime soon.
“Renewable energy represents one of the major business opportunities for the future; however, our energy plan must also make renewable energy more economical through new technological innovations,” added Malhotra.
The Greentech Innovations: End-to-End Electricity Conference offers unprecedented depth, candor and objectivity from industry experts in key sectors of the cleantech and greentech markets as an ongoing platform to support the business needs of technology innovators, investors, market analysts and policy makers. It will be packed with pertinent objective information from leading industry experts and analysts, along with significant networking opportunities. More information and registration can be found at www.greentechmedia.com.
About SRI International
Silicon Valley-based SRI International (www.sri.com) is one of the world’s leading independent research and technology development organizations. SRI, which was founded by Stanford University as Stanford Research Institute in 1946 and became independent in 1970, has been meeting the strategic needs of clients and partners for more than 60 years. Perhaps best known for its invention of the computer mouse and interactive computing, SRI has also been responsible for major advances in networking and communications, robotics, drug discovery and development, advanced materials, atmospheric research, education research, economic development, national security, and more. The nonprofit institute performs sponsored research and development for government agencies, businesses, and foundations. SRI also licenses its technologies, forms strategic alliances, and creates spin-off companies. In 2007, SRI’s consolidated revenues, including its wholly owned for-profit subsidiary, Sarnoff Corporation, were approximately $450 million.
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SOURCE: SRI International