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The Global Clean Energy Action Forum (GCEAF) will be hosted by Carnegie Mellon University in partnership with the Department of Energy on campus from September 21-23. The event will convene a joint meeting of the 13th Clean Energy Ministerial and the 7th Mission Innovation ministerial. Governments, international organizations, the private sector, academia, innovators, civil society, and early career researchers and policymakers will join together in a three-day event that features a high-level plenary, topical roundtables with energy and science ministers from 31 countries, CEOs and experts, side events, technology demonstrations, and other activities. Faculty in CMU’s College of Engineering will host events throughout the course of the forum at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh.

Ensuring fairness for workers and communities in the U.S. transition to a clean economy

Valerie Karplus
September 22
3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Room 304

Valerie Karplus, professor of engineering and public policy (EPP), joins a panel in an event co-organized by the Blue-Green Alliance, AFL-CIO, Sierra Club, United Steelworkers, Utility Workers Union of America, Union of Concerned Scientists, World Resources Institute, and Carnegie Mellon University. She will present work performed by herself and colleagues in EPP, including Erica Fuchs, Kate Whitefoot, Paulina Jaramillo, Jeremy Michalek, and Destenie Nock. U.S. Labor and NGO leaders will join technology policy scholars in sharing how they see a transition affecting jobs, skills, and wages and what policy solutions are necessary to build a high-road clean economy that sustains and grows high-quality, accessible union jobs and leaves no worker or community behind.

Karplus and her research group, the Laboratory for Energy and Organizations at CMU’s Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation, study strategies and practices for the decarbonization of global corporate and industrial firms and their supply chains, as well as regional clean energy transition. Karplus is part of the National Technology Strategy moonshot initiative, working alongside Erica Fuchs, Kate Whitefoot, and other faculty as part of a national network to create the intellectual foundations, data, and analytic tools to support the government in designing critical technology, supply chain, and infrastructure approaches that realize win-wins across multiple societal objectives.

Open energy outlook: Open and collaborative modeling for decarbonization analysis

Paulina Jaramillo
September 22
3 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Room 402

Lead Paulina Jaramillo, professor of EPP, the Open Energy Outlook (OEO) is an initiative of the Scott Institute in partnership with North Carolina State University, with funding from the Sloan Foundation. The OEO initiative aims to develop open-access transparent models and databases to inform energy and climate policy related to U.S. energy futures. At GCEAF, Jaramillo and her colleagues will present their first OEO report, outlining their efforts to research and simulate the future of the U.S. energy system under different decarbonization pathways. They will then host a panel discussion with stakeholders working on energy system decarbonization efforts to listen to their reaction to the report findings and ongoing climate mitigation endeavors in the U.S. They invite forum participants to join in the discussion and learn more about the OEO Initiative.

Jaramillo’s work takes a multi-disciplinary approach to research related to climate change, environmental sustainability, energy transitions, and development. She recently served as lead coordinating author on the transportation chapter climate mitigation report of the IPCC’s sixth climate assessment report, released in April 2022.

Systems thinking to guide a rapid and just transition to net-zero emissions

Destenie Nock
September 23
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Room 413

Destenie Nock, assistant professor of EPP and civil and environmental engineering (CEE), joins this event organized by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. This event will feature global thought leaders, industry visionaries, and energy systems experts like Nock discussing what is necessary to reach net-zero emissions, and the ways that systems methods can enable a rapid and equitable energy transition for all. Panel discussions will provide governments, firms, and institutions with new interdisciplinary decision-making approaches that combine methods from the natural, social, and engineering sciences to enable technology transformation and unprecedented deployment.

Nock leads the Energy, Equity and Sustainability Group at Carnegie Mellon. Her research is focused on eradicating energy poverty across the globe, ensuring policy makers have tools to create more equitable and sustainable energy systems, and applying optimization and decision analysis tools to determine paths for increasing a person's quality of life. In general, her team of post-docs, graduate students, and undergraduate researchers use energy planning tools designed to increase social welfare, promote social justice, and eliminate poverty.

Enhancing electric power resilience in the face of extreme events

Granger Morgan
September 23
12:45 p.m. - 1:45 p.m.
Room 306

Granger Morgan, professor EPP and electrical and computer engineering (ECE), will host an event addressing various aspects of power system resilience in the face of extreme events, posed by threats such as climate change or terrorist attack. This issue will only grow in urgency as the effects of climate change intensify. He will present a short overview on the topic of focus, followed by presentations from EPP Ph.D. alumni Sunhee Baik, now at Lawrence Berkley National Laboratories and Luke Levin, now at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. The session will wrap up with a talk by current EPP student Angelena Bowman. The talks will be followed by a round-table panel session and Q&A.

Morgan recently discussed our electric power system’s physical vulnerabilities with reporter Bill Whitaker on CBS’ 60 Minutes. He is an internationally recognized researcher in energy, electric power, environmental systems, climate change, the adoption of new technologies, and risk analysis. He co-directs the Carnegie Mellon Electricity Industry Center. 

A showcase of battery technology for electric aviation

Venkat Viswanathan
September 22, 12:00 p.m. -  8:00 p.m.
September 23, 7:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Researchers at the event will showcase their clean energy technologies, displaying solutions that are accelerating and demonstrating progress toward our shared clean energy goals. Venkat Viswanathan, professor of mechanical engineering (MechE) will showcase two displays.

He and MechE Ph.D. graduate Matt Gutenberg will present their research on electric vehicle charging infrastructure. The software solution is based on patent-granted technology performing real-world simulations providing guidance for local policy, charging infrastructure deployment and fleet

He will have an additional showcase related to batteries for electric aviation at the GCEAF’s Clean Energy Technology Showcase. The project will showcase lithium metal cells developed as part of ARPA-E funding in the SCALEUP program.