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Plan to Zero

Doug Houseman's picture
Visionary and innovator in the utility industry and grid modernization Burns & McDonnell

I have a broad background in utilities and energy. I worked for Capgemini in the Energy Practice for more than 15 years. During that time I rose to the position of CTO of the 12,000 person...

  • Member since 2017
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  • Nov 23, 2022
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How would the US get to zero for the electricity and transportation sector?

The plan must start with what not to do in the transition. That starts with leaving existing generation intact and able to run, in standby, and with a standby contract to keep fuel and staff available.

It should also not focus on one or two ways to make electricity, but rather open the options to all low/zero-GHG generation.

Next is to realize that much of the permitting, environmental and other regulations are out of step with getting anything rational done in a reasonable time. Both state and federal regulations need a complete overhaul to support infrastructure.

Energy efficiency is one of the best ways to move forward, that includes retroactive building code updates, a better energy star program, and a willingness to stop inefficient products from being sold (maybe via a tax).

Upgrades of existing transmission to the maximum reasonable voltage and amperage, rights of way support for expansion on existing routes.

Defense production act support for building capacity to make the equipment (from transformers to PV panels) in North America with LPO loan support.

Mining or extracting the needed minerals from land or sea.

The US Government buying engineering and science degree “slots” from universities and awarding them to qualified candidates.

Backing for a nuclear program to build 40 plants by 2030, and 100 by 2035. An SMR program that builds at least 50 plants by 2035, and R&D on fusion

More to follow between now and the new year.

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