Energy Security & Resilience

Global research and analysis on energy risks ranging from climate change to resource competition to population and demand growth to governance and infrastructure investment

Global research and analysis on energy risks ranging from climate change to resource competition to population and demand growth to governance and infrastructure investment

Nearly two billion people around the world live in areas and regions that suffer from conflict violence and instability. As we design new energy systems in the developing world, there are energy security and resilience challenges unique to each local environment. This is also true in developed nations that are now going through energy transitions and are creating infrastructure with new renewable energy options. The optimal electrification mix is sensitive to each local environment.

The Payne Institute is recognizing these sensitivities by connecting the breadth of engineering experience across the energy system at the Colorado School of Mines with the public policy world making decisions on energy infrastructure.  By taking a comprehensive look at environmental, economic, political and other elements in each local environment, The Payne Institute is supporting the design and creation of secure and resilient energy systems throughout the globe.

NEWS

Can Distributed Nuclear Power Address Energy Resilience and Energy Poverty? 8/19/2020

Can Distributed Nuclear Power Address Energy Resilience and Energy Poverty?

Payne Institute Fellow Alex Gilbert and Morgan Bazilian write about the three major energy challenges that are driving national and international energy decision making. First, the need to mitigate and adapt to climate change. Second, despite recent progress, many communities in both developed and developing countries remain in energy poverty or lack reliable, low-cost energy services. Finally, due to climate-amplified natural disasters and other threats, the reliability and resilience of energy systems is an increasing public concern. Existing distributed energy resources (DERs), especially solar photovoltaics and battery storage, are attempting to address each of these issues. However, more and faster progress is needed. Recent innovations in advanced nuclear designs could make nuclear power a distributed energy solution for the first time. As a dispatchable and resilient energy source, distributed nuclear could complement and accelerate the ongoing distributed energy revolution.  August 19, 2020.

Measuring “Reasonably Reliable” access to electricity services 8/19/2020

Measuring “Reasonably Reliable” access to electricity services

Payne Fellow Todd Moss, Morgan Bazilian, John Ayaburi, and Jacob Kincer write that while the electricity access rate is regularly measured in most countries, there are no routinely tracked metrics that measure reliability. This paper presents a new approach that: (1) aggregates all available country data on reliability; (2) defines a minimum threshold metric for ‘reasonable reliability’; and (3) estimates the number of people without ‘reasonably reliable’ electricity services. We estimate the number of people without access to reliable electricity is approximately 3.5 billion. This new metric provides a more granular view of the enormous energy access gap globally, and insights for future investment and policy decisions.  August 19, 2020.

CAUCASUS ENERGY INFRASTURCTURE UNDER THREAT, AS AZERBAIJAN-ARMENIAN CRISIS CONTINUES? 8/5/2020

CAUCASUS ENERGY INFRASTRUCTURE UNDER THREAT, AS AZERBAIJAN-ARMENIAN CRISIS CONTINUES?

Payne Institute Fellow Cyril Widdershoven writes about the decades old Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict is heating up again, as both sides are putting their armed forces on alert. The unexpected escalation, which could be even going into a next phase, due to increased Turkish-Azerbaijani cooperation the last days, is not only putting the Caucasus region on full alert, but also could be threatening major regional and international oil and gas transport infrastructure at risk.  August 5, 2020.

Critical Minerals Don’t Burn Up – Why The Energy Security Playbook Needs A Re-Write 7/23/2020

CRITICAL MINERALS DON’T BURN UP – WHY THE ENERGY SECURITY PLAYBOOK NEEDS A RE-WRITE

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Sara Hastings-Simon and Director Morgan Bazilian explain why the issues surrounding critical mineral security differ from traditional energy security. The required response should avoid delaying the transition to a low carbon future, whilst using the time available to focus on building robust supply chains and creating economic opportunity both in the U.S. and internationally.  July 23, 2020.  

OGCI launches $1M partnership with Payne Institute to develop new web platform to map gas flaring 7/23/2020

OGCI LAUNCHES $1M PARTNERSHIP WITH PAYNE INSTITUTE TO DEVELOP NEW PLATFORM TO MAP GAS FLARING

The Oil and Gas Climate Initiative (OGCI) has today announced a technical and financial sponsorship commitment of nearly $1M USD to the Payne Institute for Public Policy (PIPP) at Colorado School of Mines, to develop a transparent web platform to support real-time mapping and tracking of global gas flaring data.  The Payne Institute Earth Observation Group will provide the platform for the research via their VIIRS satellite. Launched in 2012, the VIIRS satellite uses advanced sensors to detect the light emitted by gas flares as infrared emissions at global facilities that find and produce oil and natural gas. The programme has been developed under the umbrella of the Global Gas Flaring Reduction Partnership (GGFR), a World Bank-led organization.  The Global Gas Flaring Explorer platform will deliver improved monitoring, visibility and transparency in flaring volume data, and will be publicly available in early 2022.  July 23, 2020.

PROPOSING A JUST TRANSITION RATING SYSTEM

PROPOSING A JUST TRANSITION RATING SYSTEM

Payne Institute Fellow Brad Handler and Director Morgan Bazilian write about how the energy transitions threaten to leave communities struggling with facility closures, job losses, and reductions in tax revenues. Many of these communities will seek to reinvigorate—or even reinvent—themselves through investment and programs to spur job and business creation. Although some communities may have “rainy day” funds available for this investment (although legislatures have to be persuaded to use such funds for this purpose), many do not. As such, some municipalities (or other local government formations) will likely have to turn to public debt markets. July 16, 2020.

Arctic Security and Dialogue: Assurance through Defence Diplomacy 7/11/2020

ARCTIC SECURITY AND DIALOGUE: ASSURANCE THROUGH DEFENCE DIPLOMACY

Payne Institute Fellow Michael Young writes about how key stakeholders have been confident that the Arctic Council was the appropriate forum for discussing most non-military Arctic issues. At the same time, UNCLOS, IMO and various international legal agreements, along with numerous forums, helped to manage a significant portion of the remaining challenges. Today, security concerns are heightening with new Arctic players and the days of a stable Arctic region, free from intervening security concerns, may be facing headwinds as military activity and rhetoric have increased over the past few years. July 11, 2020.

US-China Dispute Sharpens Focus on Minerals Policy – 7/2/2020

US CHINA DISPUTE SHARPENS FOCUS ON MINERALS POLICY

Payne Institute Senior Research Associate Sara Hastings-Simon contributes to this article about the concerns the US has regarding its reliance on China for 80% of rare earth metals. The raw materials including lithium, cobalt, nickel and graphite comprise nearly 80% of the cost of electric vehicle batteries, according a study by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.  July 2, 2020.

PODCAST: ENERGY THINKS WITH TISHA SCHULLER 6/11/2020

PODCAST: ENERGY THINKS WITH TISHA SCHULLER

Payne Institute Advisory Board Member Tisha Schuller has a new podcast titled Energy Thinks, where she has conversations with top thought leaders in the energy space focusing on sustainability, ESG and future proofing against social risk.  June 11, 2020.

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For more information about the Energy Security & Resilience Initiative at the Payne Institute for Public Policy, please contact our Strategy and Operations Manager, Gregory Clough, at gclough@mines.edu.