133 episodes

Resources Radio is a weekly podcast by Resources for the Future. Each week we talk to leading experts about climate change, electricity, ecosystems, and more, making the latest research accessible to everyone.

Resources Radio Resources Radio

    • Government
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

Resources Radio is a weekly podcast by Resources for the Future. Each week we talk to leading experts about climate change, electricity, ecosystems, and more, making the latest research accessible to everyone.

    The Dollar Value of Energy Innovation, with Daniel Shawhan

    The Dollar Value of Energy Innovation, with Daniel Shawhan

    In this week’s episode, host Daniel Raimi talks with Resources for the Future (RFF) Fellow Daniel Shawhan about a new working paper that he and several RFF coauthors recently published, about the value of advanced energy funding. The study assesses how government funding for research, development, and demonstration of emerging clean energy technologies can reduce the costs of deploying those technologies in the future. The authors include in their analysis advanced nuclear energy, geothermal energy, carbon capture and storage, electricity storage, and direct air capture of carbon dioxide. Shawhan and his team also estimate how bringing down these costs can benefit society by reducing air pollution, electricity bills, and more.

    References and recommendations:

    “The Value of Advanced Energy Funding: Projected Effects of Proposed US Funding for Advanced Energy Technologies” working paper by Daniel Shawhan, Kathryne Cleary, Christoph Funke, and Steven Witkin; https://www.rff.org/publications/working-papers/projected-effects-proposed-us-funding-advanced-energy-technologies/

    “The Value of Advanced Energy Funding: Projected Effects of Proposed US Funding for Advanced Energy Technologies” issue brief by Daniel Shawhan, Kathryne Cleary, Christoph Funke, and Steven Witkin; https://www.rff.org/publications/issue-briefs/projected-effects-of-proposed-funding-for-advanced-energy-technologies/

    “Benefits of Energy Technology Innovation Part 2: Economy-Wide Direct Air Capture Modeling Results” by Marc Hafstead; https://www.rff.org/publications/working-papers/benefits-energy-technology-innovation-economy-wide-direct-air-capture/

    “Why Does Disaster Aid Often Favor White People?” by Christopher Flavelle; https://www.nytimes.com/2021/06/07/climate/FEMA-race-climate.html

    TextAloud text-to-speech software; https://nextup.com/TextAloud/index.html

    • 34 min
    Experiments in Sustainable Development, with Kelsey Jack

    Experiments in Sustainable Development, with Kelsey Jack

    In this week’s episode, host Daniel Raimi talks with Kelsey Jack, associate professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara; director of the Poverty Alleviation Group at UC Santa Barbara’s Environmental Market Solutions Lab; and codirector of the King Climate Action Initiative at the Poverty Action Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Jack works at the intersection of environmental economics and international development, studying how environmental issues shape economic development—and vice versa—in developing nations. She discusses some of the experiments she’s done on electricity payments and ecosystem service provision in different parts of the world, and she suggests how her research can inform policymaking on sustainable economic development.

    References and recommendations:

    “Good Economics for Hard Times” by Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo; https://www.goodeconomicsforhardtimes.com/

    “Ministry for the Future” by Kim Stanley Robinson; https://www.hachettebookgroup.com/titles/kim-stanley-robinson/the-ministry-for-the-future/9780316300162/

    • 34 min
    The Lowdown on High Power Prices, with Meredith Fowlie

    The Lowdown on High Power Prices, with Meredith Fowlie

    In this week’s episode, host Daniel Raimi talks with Meredith Fowlie, an associate professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics at the University of California, Berkeley, and a faculty director of the Energy Institute at Haas. Fowlie and coauthors recently published a working paper on the causes and implications of high electricity prices in the state of California. These high prices burden low-income households and pose a hurdle to reducing emissions through the electrification of transportation, heating, and other sectors. In today’s episode, Fowlie describes proposals for reforming electricity pricing in California in ways that address this complex and evolving challenge.

    References and recommendations:

    “Designing Electricity Rates for an Equitable Energy Transition” by Severin Borenstein, Meredith Fowlie, and James Sallee; https://haas.berkeley.edu/wp-content/uploads/WP314.pdf

    “Competitors to lithium-ion batteries in the grid storage market” episode of the Voltscast podcast with David Roberts; https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/competitors-to-lithium-ion-batteries-in-grid-storage/id1548554104?i=1000521809537

    “Timber Wars” podcast from Oregon Public Broadcasting; https://www.opb.org/show/timberwars/

    “Resources Radio” podcast from Resources for the Future; https://www.resources.org/resources-radio/

    “Why Animals Don’t Get Lost” by Kathryn Schulz; https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/04/05/why-animals-dont-get-lost

    • 30 min
    Who’s a Big Fan of Offshore Wind? US Challenges and Opportunities, with Jeremy Firestone

    Who’s a Big Fan of Offshore Wind? US Challenges and Opportunities, with Jeremy Firestone

    In this episode, host Kristin Hayes talks with Jeremy Firestone, a wind energy specialist, professor, and director of the Center for Research in Wind at the University of Delaware. For many years, Firestone has explored people’s attitudes and economic preferences related to wind power development. He and coauthors recently published new research about the intersection of offshore wind development and coastal recreation in the journal “Energy Research & Social Science,” a study that Firestone and Hayes discuss; they also talk more broadly about the opportunities and challenges associated with increasing offshore wind development in the United States.

    References and recommendations:

    “Uncharted waters: Exploring coastal recreation impacts, coping behaviors, and attitudes towards offshore wind energy development in the United States” by Michael D. Ferguson, Darrick Evensen, Lauren A. Ferguson, David Bidwell, Jeremy Firestone, Tasha L. Dooley, and Clayton R. Mitchell; https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2214629621001225

    “Wind energy: A human challenge” by Jeremy Firestone; https://science.sciencemag.org/content/366/6470/1206.1

    “Expert elicitation survey predicts 37% to 49% declines in wind energy costs by 2050” by Ryan Wiser, Joseph Rand, Joachim Seel, Philipp Beiter, Erin Baker, Eric Lantz, and Patrick Gilman; https://www.nature.com/articles/s41560-021-00810-z

    “The Economic Costs of NIMBYism: Evidence from Renewable Energy Projects” by Stephen Jarvis; https://haas.berkeley.edu/wp-content/uploads/WP311.pdf

    “Carbon policy and the emissions implications of electric vehicles” by Kenneth Gillingham, Marten Ovaere, and Stephanie M. Weber; https://www.nber.org/system/files/working_papers/w28620/w28620.pdf

    “Coffeeland: One Man’s Dark Empire and the Making of Our Favorite Drug” by Augustine Sedgewick; https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/316748/coffeeland-by-augustine-sedgewick/

    • 32 min
    Intersections Between Energy and International Development, with Sheila Hollis

    Intersections Between Energy and International Development, with Sheila Hollis

    In this episode, host Kristin Hayes talks with Sheila Hollis, acting executive director of the United States Energy Association (USEA). USEA is an industry association that represents 150 members across the US energy sector, from the largest Fortune 500 companies to small energy consulting firms. The organization supports policy and technical discussions with the US Department of Energy to expand the use of clean energy technology globally; it also works with the US Agency for International Development to expand energy access in developing countries. Hollis describes the changes faced by the energy industry in both mature and developing markets.

    References and recommendations:

    “The New Map: Energy, Climate, and the Clash of Nations” by Daniel Yergin; https://www.danielyergin.com/books/thenewmap

    • 29 min
    Big Dollars, Big Rewards? The Roles of Prizes in Driving Innovation, with Zorina Khan

    Big Dollars, Big Rewards? The Roles of Prizes in Driving Innovation, with Zorina Khan

    In February this year, we noticed at Resources for the Future that our explainer about carbon capture and storage—which provides an overview of the technology, along with its uses, benefits, and drawbacks—had suddenly skyrocketed in terms of page use on the website. When we investigated what had prompted this sudden expanded interest, we found Elon Musk's announcement from the day prior: Musk had offered $100 million in prize money, through the XPRIZE Foundation, to teams that can envision, prototype, and validate scalable carbon capture and removable technology. At the end of the four-year contest period, several prizes will be awarded: $50 million for first place, $20 million for second place, and $10 million for third. In addition, the program will offer 25 six-figure scholarships to competing academic teams. According to XPRIZE officials, the $100 million on offer represents one of the largest—if not the largest—incentive prizes in history.

    So, this episode is about prizes: how they've been used, what we can learn from past successes and failures, and how they compare to other instruments that are designed to spur innovation. Zorina Khan joins the podcast to talk about these fascinating issues. Khan is a professor of economics at Bowdoin College and a member of the National Bureau of Economic Research. Her research examines issues in law and economic history, including intellectual property rights, technological progress in Europe and the United States, antitrust litigation, legal systems, and corporate governance. She's an award-winning author, and her newest book is called "Inventing Ideas: Patents, Prizes, and the Knowledge Economy."

    References and recommendations:

    "Carbon Capture and Storage 101" from Resources for the Future; https://www.rff.org/publications/explainers/carbon-capture-and-storage-101/

    "$100M prize for carbon removal" from XPRIZE Foundation and Elon Musk; https://www.xprize.org/prizes/elonmusk

    "Inventing Ideas: Patents, Prizes, and the Knowledge Economy" by B. Zorina Khan; https://global.oup.com/academic/product/inventing-ideas-9780190936082

    "Democratization of Invention" by B. Zorina Khan; https://books.bowdoin.edu/book/the-democratization-of-invention-patents-and-copyrights-in-american-economic-development-1790-1920/

    “Unlocking history through automated virtual unfolding of sealed documents imaged by X-ray microtomography” by Jana Dambrogio, Amanda Ghassaei, Daniel Starza Smith, Holly Jackson, Martin L. Demaine, Graham Davis, David Mills, Rebekah Ahrendt, Nadine Akkerman, David van der Linden, and Erik D. Demaine; https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-021-21326-w

    • 36 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
1 Rating

1 Rating

Top Podcasts In Government

Listeners Also Subscribed To