Ev5 Getty Images 1161730991
Ev5 Getty Images 1161730991
Ev5 Getty Images 1161730991
Ev5 Getty Images 1161730991
Ev5 Getty Images 1161730991

Collaborative Effort to Help Drive Emissions to Zero or Near-Zero By 2050

Oct. 28, 2020
EPRI president says the United States could produce electricity with little to no carbon emissions by 2050 through the Low-Carbon Resources Initiative.

On Sept. 17, Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) President Arshad Mansoor told energy stakeholders a cleaner electric grid will be the catalyst for the entire U.S. energy sector to produce zero or near-zero carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 2050.

"The electricity sector is the trailblazer on the road to decarbonization. Right now, 20% of the energy used in the United States is electricity. By 2040, more than 40% of the economy could be electrified," Mansoor said. "But we need more than electrification to decarbonize the energy system. We have the opportunity to produce other forms of low-carbon energy using clean electricity."

In a speech to the U.S. Energy Association's (USEA) 2020 Advanced Energy and Technology Forum, the EPRI's president addressed the Low-Carbon Resources Initiative (LCRI), a collaborative effort across the electric and gas sectors to help drive emissions to zero or near-zero by 2050 by advancing existing and emerging low-carbon technologies.

"We know how to produce clean electricity and we can produce clean energy from clean electrons," said Mansoor. "Now we're embarking on this moonshot, our LCRI."

Economy-wide decarbonization will require a holistic view across electric and gas grids to deliver resilient, integrated systems providing clean, affordable, and reliable energy across the United States and around the world. Through the LCRI, the EPRI and Gas Technology Institute (GTI) are already collaborating with more than 20 companies worldwide to advance research, development, and deployment of low-carbon technologies, including nuclear energy and renewables. Such efforts would benefit the public through cleaner energy that supports reduced air pollution, healthier quality of life, and environmental protection.

"This level of industry engagement is just the start," said Mansoor. "We expect to work with more than 100 companies through the initiative and to leverage its US$100 million funding target many times over through public and private collaboration."

The LCRI also includes research, testing, and technology demonstrations for large-scale use of low-carbon energy carriers — hydrogen, ammonia, synthetic fuels, and biofuels — and processes, such as blending hydrogen in natural gas pipelines, and carbon capture, use, and storage technologies.

Mansoor added: "The industry initiative is designed to bring together the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), national labs, universities, and startup companies to uncover emerging, low-carbon technologies and enable their application at scale in the energy industry through coordinated research and development."

Before his speech, Mansoor took a moment to recognize the recent passing of the USEA's late executive director, Barry Worthington.

"Barry was a pragmatist and we appreciate that he saw, that he magnified, the nexus between energy expansion and technology development in this forum," Mansoor said.

To learn more about the LCRI, visit here.

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