Category: Circular Economy

Water Security Issues for Lithium Mining in Chile 5/17/2022

Water Security Issues for Lithium Mining in Chile

Payne Institute Communications Associate Eleanor Igwe writes about how due to lithium’s central role in electric vehicle batteries, its demand is predicted to continue a steep rise and likely reach the level of two to four million metric tons by 2030. In addition to the stresses this will put on mining production and the environment – issues of water security are likely to become a key challenge.  May 17, 2022.  

A solar-energy trade dispute erupts at exactly the wrong time 5/17/2022

A solar-energy trade dispute erupts at exactly the wrong time

Payne Institute Communications Associate Simon Lomax and Director Morgan Bazilian write about how a complaint by a California company is tanking production just when we need it most — and could delay Xcel’s exit from coal.  Colorado’s coal phase out hasn’t happened yet – and it won’t happen without the continued construction of new power sources to take the place of old power sources when they are due to shut down. Actions that slow down or stop these construction projects, however well intentioned, only increase the risk of failure.  May 17, 2022.  

The Biden Administration Has Taken Some Bold Steps on Energy, But More Remains to be Done 5/12/2022

The Biden Administration Has Taken Some Bold Steps on Energy, But More Remains to be Done

Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian and Duncan Wood write about how President Biden’s recent invocation of the Defense Production Act (DPA) to include five critical minerals is an important symbolic step toward moving to a low-carbon energy and transport system. The minerals mentioned in Biden’s announcement are those that are especially fundamental to modern batteries for electric vehicles and energy storage for power systems that are increasingly reliant on wind and solar power.  May 12, 2022.

Fostering Effective Energy Transition 2022 5/11/2022

Fostering Effective Energy Transition 2022

Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian contributed to this World Economic Forum report on how the global energy transition builds on the trends from the Energy Transition Index to provide perspective on the current challenges and recommendations on how to navigate the transition through a turbulent macroeconomic and geopolitical environment. A series of compounded shocks pose short-term risks to energy affordability, sustainability, and energy security. However, the window to prevent the worst consequences of climate change is closing fast.  May 11, 2022.

Corporate ESG Commitments are Gaining Popularity. Can They be Trusted?

Corporate ESG Commitments are Gaining Popularity. Can They be Trusted?

Payne Institute Communications Associate Elsa Barron, Payne Institute Program Manager Jordy Lee, and Payne Institute Director Morgan Bazilian write about the growing concerns about the long-term sustainability of many industries have led to big changes in approaches to corporate strategies and management. Pressure from financiers is adding to the momentum. Concerns about climate related financial risks and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) data, have helped create demand from bankers for companies to show that they are actively working towards global climate goals.  May 9, 2022. 

Location, Location, Low-Carbon: How Climate is Changing the Holy Trinity of Real Estate 5/6/2022

Location, Location, Low-Carbon: How Climate is Changing the Holy Trinity of Real Estate

Payne Institute Communications Associate Simon Lomax writes about how the cardinal rule for real estate used to be location, location, location, but now he is confident the new trinity that drives value in the real estate sector: location, location, low-carbon.  Location remains critically important, but for a growing number of real estate firms, so is climate change and speeding up the world’s transition to a zero-carbon energy system.  May 6, 2022. 

Estimating global economic well-being with unlit settlements 5/5/2022

Estimating global economic well-being with unlit settlements

Payne Institute Earth Observation Group writes about how it is well established that nighttime radiance, measured from satellites, correlates with economic prosperity across the globe.  For 49 countries spread across Africa, Asia and the Americas we are able to predict and map the wealth class obtained from ~2,400,000 geo-located households based upon the percent of unlit settlements, with an overall accuracy of 87%. May 5, 2022.  

HOW RUSSIA MADE THE WORLD MORE FOOD INSECURE 4/22/2022

HOW RUSSIA MADE THE WORLD MORE FOOD INSECURE

Payne Institute Communications Associate Brooke Bowser and Director Morgan Bazilian write about how Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has not only created global food insecurity but is also damaging the environment.  As markets swing with volatility, the reactions of some countries will have significant ramifications for global food security and resilience to climate change.  April 22, 2022.