Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Conserving hydrocarbons would save $438 billion

25.05.2004


Just as low-carbohydrate diets are trimming the American waistline, more judicious use of hydrocarbon-based fossil fuels would reduce U.S. energy consumption by 33 percent and save consumers $438 billion a year by 2014, according to an analysis by Cornell University ecologists.



David Pimentel, Cornell professor of ecology, and 11 student ecologists found the most fat for trimming -- with the best potential for major energy savings -- in the transportation, residential heating and cooling, industrial and food-production sectors. Energy conservation and implementation of energy-efficient technologies also would allow significant savings in the production and use of chemicals, paper and lumber, household appliances, lighting and metals, the analysis showed. Their report on "U.S. Energy Conservation and Efficiency: Benefits and Costs" is in the latest issue of the journal Environment, Development, and Sustainability (Vol. #6, Issue 3-4).

American taxpayers could save an estimated $39 billion a year by insisting that the government end subsidies to the energy industries, according to Pimentel. He adds: "The next time you’re pumping gas or paying the heating bill, ponder this: As high as fuel prices are in this country, they would be even higher without government subsidies to prop up the industry. Instead of paying at the pump, every American family is paying about $410 in taxes each year for subsidies that keep gasoline prices and other energy product prices artificially low. This policy encourages greater consumption and importation of more oil and natural gas. Ending subsidies and pricing energy at its true cost would stimulate the use of conservation and energy-efficient technologies, and result in net savings."


The analysis was performed in a yearlong, graduate-level class called Environmental Policy in which students, under Pimentel’s direction, investigate complex environmental issues by compiling previously published studies and drawing conclusions. Cornell students in the energy-efficiency project were Andrew Pleasant, Jason Barron, Jen Gaudioso, Noah Pollock, Elisa Chae, Yoonji Kim, Allison Lassiter, Christina Shiavoni, Alex Jackson, Melinda Lee and Andrea Eaton. When the analysis was conducted, during the 2001-02 school year, gasoline averaged $1.50 a gallon and natural gas prices were just beginning to rise. Elevated energy prices in 2004 make the case for conservation even more compelling, the students say, and further boost the potential payback for implementation of energy-efficient technologies.

Concluding their analysis, Pimentel and his students write: "We are confident that the president and the U.S. Congress, working with the people, could reduce our energy consumption in approximately a decade by 32 quads (32,000,000,000,000,000 BTUs) per year, about 33 percent of present energy use. Saving fossil energy is fully justified because it would help reduce American dependence on foreign sources of energy and improve national security, improve the environment, reduce the threat of global climate change and save approximately $438 billion per year, which would help support the U.S. economy."

Roger Segelken | Cornell news
Further information:
http://www.news.cornell.edu/releases/May04/Low-hydrocarbon.hrs.html

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht Fraunhofer ISE Supports Market Development of Solar Thermal Power Plants in the MENA Region
21.02.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Solare Energiesysteme ISE

nachricht New tech for commercial Lithium-ion batteries finds they can be charged 5 times fast
20.02.2018 | University of Warwick

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Developing reliable quantum computers

International research team makes important step on the path to solving certification problems

Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stiffness matters

22.02.2018 | Life Sciences

Magnetic field traces gas and dust swirling around supermassive black hole

22.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

First evidence of surprising ocean warming around Galápagos corals

22.02.2018 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>