Speaking today at The Business Council for Sustainable Energy’ annual meeting, Secretary of Energy Dr. Steven Chu, addressed the need in the United States for continued investment in energy technologies that will carry us toward a renewable future. The event was held at the headquarters of the American Gas Association in Washington, D.C.
From research and development to demonstration and deployment, Secretary Chu continues to make sustainability and efficiency a priority as we move toward a carbon constrained future. He specifically highlighted natural gas, touching on both its low-carbon benefit and the robust domestic supply. The secretary also discussed the Department of Energy’s Energy Innovation Hubs. These research hubs are concentrating on the development of cutting edge innovation, like energy efficient buildings, fuels derived from sunlight and nuclear modeling and simulation.
Chu also talked about the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), a federal agency currently promoting and funding research and development of advanced energy technologies. Secretary Chu highlighted ARPA-E’s work on an all-liquid metal battery that could provide grid-scale energy storage at 1/20th the cost. He also pointed out the developments in advanced power electronics, which will help to make the U.S. more competitive with other nations, namely China, and rapidly adopt more energy efficient practices.
The main message of Secretary Chu’s speech was that the U.S. is embarking on a second industrial revolution. The first gave us energy that changed our lives. The second will provide that same energy but in a cleaner, more efficient and more sustainable way.