Art Rosenfeld, Godfather of Energy Efficiency and EAEI Founder, Passes Away

Art Rosenfeld, a Berkeley Lab Distinguished Scientist Emeritus who was also known as California’s “godfather” of energy efficiency and has been credited with being personally responsible for billions of dollars in energy savings, died Friday at his home in Berkeley. He was 90. 

Donation in Rosenfeld’s name can be made to the Trust for Conservation Innovation and the UC Berkeley Graduate Giving Rosenfeld Award.

The family plans to hold a memorial for the community in the summer. 

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See a complete biography and find additional information here.

Vapers Beware: 10 Things to Know About E-Cigarettes

Among items on this list developed by the University of California? The flavors can be toxic, e-cigarettes contain nicotine, the batteries can explode, and, according to research conducted at Berkeley Lab, vaping has harmful secondhand and thirdhand effects.

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Beijing China

$5M Foundation Gift to Help Support US-China Energy Center at Berkeley Lab

In 2015, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and UC Berkeley announced a partnership with Tsinghua University in Beijing. They formed the Berkeley Tsinghua Joint Research Center on Energy and Climate Change, a center helping to develop scientifically based clean energy solutions and the next generation of leaders to champion those solutions.

Today, that effort received welcome support from Jim and Marilyn Simons in the amount of a $5 million donation.

The core activity of the Berkeley-Tsinghua Center focuses on its scientific research and analysis on clean energy solutions for China, on areas such as low-carbon cities, carbon markets, and clean energy system planning and integration. In addition to the support for the Center, $2 million of the Simons gift will go towards creating the first endowed chair at Berkeley Lab, the Nat Simons Chair in China Energy Policy. 

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See the related story in the Sing Tao Daily here.

Researchers Seongeun Jeong and Marc Fischer (Credit: Marilyn Chung/Berkeley Lab)

EAEI study shows Bay Area methane emissions may be double what we thought

Emissions of methane—a potent climate-warming gas⎯may be roughly twice as high as officially estimated for the San Francisco Bay Area. Most of the emissions come from biological sources, such as landfills, but natural gas leakage is also an important source, according to a new study from the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab).

The report by EAEI researchers Seongeun Jeong and Marc Fischer is the first to quantify the relative contributions of various sources to methane emissions. Their paper, “Estimating methane emissions from biological and fossil-fuel sources in the San Francisco Bay Area,” was recently published online in the journal Geophysical Research Letters

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See the complete study here

EAEI's Ryan Wiser talks about the falling cost of windpower on the Energy Transition Show podcast

EAEI's Ryan Wiser is featured on the Energy Transition Show podcast to discuss a recent Berkeley Lab/NREL report on the cost of wind power. 

Can wind prices keep falling, or have they bottomed out? The report, based on a survey of 163 of the world's foremost wind energy experts, examines what factors have led to a reduction in the cost of wind power. 

Click here to listen to the podcast.

Click here to read the complete study.

Team including two EAEI researchers is recipient of 2016 R&D100 Award

EAEI researchers Hugo Destaillats and Tom Kirchstetter are part of a team that won a 2016 R&D100 Award for their work on the Cool Roof Time Machine project.

This research establishes a method to simulate soiling and weathering of roofing material, reproducing in the lab in only a few days what would naturally take three years. This “cool roof time machine” protocol has been approved by ASTM International, a widely referenced standards body, as a standard practice for the industry, and is expected to accelerate deployment of cool roofs, which have been shown to reduce a building’s energy use and mitigate the urban heat island effect.

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Read more about the Cool Roof Time Machine Project here.

Characterizing methane emissions from fossil fuels

EAEI researchers Jeff Greenblatt and Max Wei are quoted in an October 6, 2016 article in Christan Science Monitor on methane emissions from fossil fuels.

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Can Wind and Solar Fuel Africa’s Future?

Research by EAEI’s Ranjit Deshmukh and Grace Wu on planning renewable energy zones in Africa was recently highlighted in Nature.

Across Africa, several nations are moving aggressively to develop their solar and wind capacity. The momentum has some experts wondering whether large parts of the continent can vault into a clean future.

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Nihar Shah in attendance at adoption of the Kigali Amendment on October 14, 2016

EAEI Researcher Nihar Shah Quoted in New York Times Article on Emerging Climate Accord

Energy Analysis and Environmental Impacts Division researcher Nihar Shah is quoted in a New York Times article about air conditioner use in developing nations.

Shah provided technical support in negotiations for the historic Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, passed earlier this month. The goal of the amendment is to phase out potent greenhouse gasses used as refrigerants in the units.

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Experts Anticipate Significant Continued Reductions in Wind Energy Costs

Technology advancements are expected to continue to drive down the cost of wind energy, according to a survey of wind power experts led by Berkeley Lab.

Experts anticipate cost reductions of 24%–30% by 2030 and 35%–41% by 2050, under a median or ‘best guess’ scenario, driven by bigger and more efficient turbines, lower capital and operating costs, and other advancements.

The findings are described in an article in the journal Nature Energy. The study was led by EAEI's Ryan Wiser, a senior scientist at Berkeley Lab, and included contributions from other staff from Berkeley Lab, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, University of Massachusetts, and participants in the International Energy Agency Wind (IEA) Wind Technology Collaboration Programme Task 26.

See the full story here.

See the complete article in Nature Energy here.