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Climate Change and Renewable Energy

T21-United States of America Model

Why a T21-USA Model?

America’s continuing growing demand for energy is facing an upward climb of oil and gas prices, competition for energy from countries like China and India, and concerns about greenhouse gas emissions, global warming, and its impacts. This has heightened discussions about alternative and renewable sources of energy in the U.S. political landscape. Unfortunately, the space for broad and honest debate is clouded by political ideologies, difficulty in understanding the data that is available, and biased presentations by special interests that focus narrowly on aspects of the nature and severity of the challenges and how best to address them.

The T21-USA Model

The T21-USA model is a scenario planning tool that offers a framework under which divergent views about the energy debate can be examined in a transparent, graphical, and easy-to-understand manner. It retraces the last 25 years of social, economic and environmental development in the US and tests and compares several policies that could change the development path of the nation. The following interconnected issues are addressed in the model: energy availability, emissions and global warming, sustainability of public deficit and public services, population growth, and trends and impacts from the rest of the world.

The T21-USA model results indicate that continuing as we have over the past few decades could lead the US to become increasingly dependent on foreign resources, especially energy, and continue to contribute disproportionately to the world's waste and pollution, especially carbon dioxide emissions. Furthermore, alternative scenarios show that major reductions in the US’ resource consumption and pollution generation could be possible with little impact on the overall economy or possibly even expanding it in new directions.

As a follow up of T21-USA, the following projects are being developed:

T21-North America Model: A collaboration with Association for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas-USA and State University of New York’s College of Environmental Science and Forestry to examine energy issues in the context of an integrated framework that incorporates the relations of the energy sector to the broader economic, social, and environmental framework. This project is part of ASPO-USA’s Global Energy Modeling project. more

Climate Change Impacts on the Competitiveness of Energy-Intensive Manufacturing Sectors: A collaboration with High Road Strategies to examine how various climate policy proposals will affect the competitiveness of energy-intensive manufacturing sectors. more

Future Prospects of Public Transportation: An examination of the assumptions underlying the vision of a future where oil is no longer being used in the U.S. rail transport sector. more

Analysis of Waste Reuse for Energy Production in Central Ohio: A collaboration with Ohio State University’s Center for Resilience to support regional Material Flow Analysis and Economic Input/Output analysis for the Central Ohio area. more

Analysis of the impacts of increasing the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) Standards: A collaboration with Congressman Roscoe Bartlett’s (R-MD) office to analyze the impacts of increasing the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards (H.R. 1506, H.R. 2927, and Revised Markey bills) and introducing a National Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) H.R. 969 bill. more

Universities and Colleges: Various universities already adopted T21-USA as part of their courses or for research purposes. These include: Ohio State University, Middlebury College, University of North Carolina, and University of Bergen (Norway).

Support for the development of T21-USA was provided by The Changing Horizons Fund. For questions about T21-USA, contact Andrea Bassi at .

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