Interagency Working Group on Coal and Power Plant Communities and Economic Revitalization (Energy Communities IWG) Director Brian Anderson, Ph.D. this morning was the keynote speaker at Carnegie Mellon University’s (CMU) Energy Week event.
The event convened energy experts, key influencers, students, corporate executives, and entrepreneurs from business, government, media, non-governmental organizations and academia for a week of learning, networking and innovation. It focused on facilitating dialogue on the challenges and opportunities in decarbonizing the industrial sector.
“Decarbonization will help create new clean energy jobs, revitalize distressed communities, advance environmental justice and help achieve Administration goals of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. These efforts could play an integral role in energy communities as well, bringing in new economic opportunities and jobs for displaced energy workers,” said Anderson.
Anderson spoke to his experience as Director of the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL). NETL has a long history in carbon management, including a carbon capture and storage program that has advanced the technologies over the last 25 years to where they are today, ready for wider-scale deployment. To facilitate a carbon-free economy by 2050, the Laboratory is focused on de-risking, scaling, and accelerating the adoption of new technologies.
“To address climate change at the source and achieve economy-wide net zero emissions by 2050, we must explore all methods of decarbonizing our country’s industrial sector,” Anderson said. “Between clean hydrogen production sourced from America’s vast energy resources paired with carbon capture and storage processes, new carbon-reducing industrial processes and direct air capture (DAC) technologies, NETL is pioneering a variety of options that will drive economic growth while lowering emissions.”
Carnegie Mellon’s Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation is leading the nation in facilitating discussion and driving action towards decarbonizing our energy economy. As its flagship event, CMU Energy Week brings energy and sustainability leaders, including scholars, investors, and entrepreneurs, from across the nation to Carnegie Mellon University to combine forces and exchange ideas on the world’s most pressing issues in energy.
Established by an Executive Order during President Biden’s first week in office, the IWG is pursuing a whole-of-government approach to create good-paying union jobs, spur economic revitalization, remediate environmental degradation and support energy workers in coal, oil and gas, and power plant communities across the country. The IWG supports the Administration’s goals of a carbon emission-free electricity sector by 2035 and economy-wide net-zero emissions by 2050.