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January 25, 2021 49 min

What did you stock up on in 2020? Toilet paper? Cleaning products? Furniture for your permanent staycation? We rarely consider the energy needed to make all those products, but from those we use daily to the steel and concrete that build our world, nearly everything in our economy comes from industrial processes. And those industrial processes use a lot of energy, and – at least for now – rely in large part on fossil fuels. America’s industrial sector was responsible for more than a third of national emissions in 2019, and that trend will only grow as our economy recovers. Achieving a net-zero future requires decarbonizing the industrial sector, but how do we solve such a large challenge? On the latest Electrify This! episode, host Sara Baldwin speaks with experts unlocking industry electrification to explore what it will take to decarbonize industry, which policies can help accelerate deployment of electric technologies, how the Biden Administration and Congress can revitalize American industry, and whichindustries stand to benefit! 

Guests: 

Ali Hasanbeigi, Ph.D., is the Founder, CEO, and Research Director at Global Efficiency Intelligence (GEI), an energy and climate change mitigation consulting firm based in Florida. Dr. Hasanbeigi has over 15 years of international experience working on industrial energy efficiency and decarbonization of the manufacturing sector. Prior to founding GEI, he worked for over seven years as a scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. He is the lead author of the forthcoming report titled "Electrification of U.S. Manufacturing."

Edward Rightor, Ph.D., is the Director of the Industrial Program with the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (or ACEEE). In this role, Dr. Rightor develops and leads the strategic vision for the industrial sector, shapes the research and policy agenda, and convenes stakeholders. He has also held several leadership roles at Dow Chemical during his 31-year career, serving as the director of strategic projects in Dow’s Environmental Technology Center and the facilitator of Dow’s Corporate Water Strategy Team. Working across global industrial associations, he spearheaded a roadmap for the chemical industry on paths to reduce energy and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. He is an author of numerous reports, including the most recent ACEEE report, “Beneficial Electrification in Industry.” 

To Dig in Deeper, Check out these Must-Read Resources: 

  • Electrifying U.S. Industry: Technology and Process-Based Approaches to Decarbonization
  • Global Efficiency Intelligence, Electrification of Manufacturing website
  • Beneficial Electrification of Industry (ACEEE, July 2020)
  • Technologies and Policies to Decarbonize Global Industry: Review and Assessment of Mitigation Drivers Through 2070 (Science Direct, May 2020)
  • Cutting U.S. Industrial Emissions to Near-Zero by 2050 would boost GDP 3.3%, Create 5 Million Jobs (Forbes, December 2020)


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