BOX 1.1

Study Charge

This study will critically evaluate the current and projected state of development of energy-supply, storage, and end-use technologies. The study will not make policy recommendations, but it will analyze where appropriate the role of public policy in determining the demand and cost for energy and the configuration of the nation’ s energy systems. The committee will develop a “reference scenario” that reflects a projection of current economic, technology cost and performance, and policy parameters into the future. Within that scenario, the committee will evaluate energy technologies with respect to:

  • Estimated times to readiness for deployment

  • Current and projected costs (e.g., per unit of energy production or savings)

  • Current and projected performance (e.g., efficiency, emissions per unit of output)

  • Key technical, environmental, economic, policy, and social factors that would enhance or impede development and deployment

  • Key environmental (including CO2 mitigation), economic, energy security, social, and other life-cycle impacts arising from deployment

  • Key research and development (R&D) challenges.

The committee may assess the sensitivity of these factors to possible variations in the key economic, technology cost and performance, and policy parameters that define the reference scenario.

The primary focus of the study will be on existing technologies and technologies likely to be available for deployment within the next decade. A secondary focus will be on technologies with longer times to deployment. The study will specifically provide estimates and findings on the following:

  • For current technologies and technologies where initial deployment is judged to be within the next decade: estimates of costs, performance, and impacts

  • For technologies where deployment is judged likely to be between 10 and 25 years: findings regarding key factors that enhance or impede adoption, implications for costs, and R&D challenges

  • For technologies where deployment is judged likely to be greater than 25 years: findings regarding key factors that enhance or impede R&D challenges.



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