Is American Energy Independence Possible?
Can US energy production meet national power and fuel consumption in the foreseeable future? Overall, the United States consumes a staggering 97 Quadrillion BTUs of energy annually. (EIA, Sept. 2012) To meet this demand, numerous resources are utilized, e.g., coal, natural gas and petroleum, which come from domestic and foreign sources based on pricing, availability and public policy. While new sources of domestic energy supply have entered and are entering the market—shale gas and oil, and wind and solar—do scale, economics and the commodities’ intrinsic qualities allow flexible, fungible use? Is American energy independence possible given the country’s seemingly insatiable appetite for energy?
Branko Terzic, executive director, Deloitte Center for Energy Solutions
An international consultant to corporations, multilateral lending agencies and governments on energy, infrastructure and network industry issues, Dr. Terzic has extensive experience in the oil and gas industry in valuation, management and regulation having regulated natural gas distribution companies at retail, interstate natural gas and oil pipelines at the FERC and serving as CEO of a natural gas distribution company. Dr. Terzic is a former Commissioner of the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), Commissioner on the State of Wisconsin Public Service Commission (WPSC) and Chairman, CEO and President of the holding company Yankee Energy System Inc. and subsidiary Yankee Gas Services Company (Meriden, CT). Dr. Terzic also serves as Chairman of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UN ECE) and Ad Hoc Group of Experts on Cleaner Electricity Production from Coal and Other Fossil Fuels (Geneva, Switzerland). In 2010 he was appointed to The National Coal Council, the advisory body to the U.S. Secretary of Energy having previously served on the DOE Secretary’s National Petroleum Council.
Valerie Thomas, Anderson Interface Associate Professor of Natural Systems, School of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Georgia Tech
Dr. Thomas’ current research projects include the environmental impacts of biofuels and electricity system policy and planning. Her research interests are energy and materials efficiency, sustainability, industrial ecology, technology assessment, international security, and science and technology policy. She has a joint appointment in the School of Public Policy. From 1989 to 2004, she was a Research Scientist at Princeton University, in the Princeton Environmental Institute and in the Center for Energy and Environmental Studies. Thomas was a Member of the U.S. EPA Science Advisory Board from 2003 to 2009.
Sam Shelton, principal research engineer,Strategic Energy Institute; Georgia Tech
Dr. Shelton’s primary area of teaching, research, and development is innovative energy systems assessment, design and optimization. As its first director, Dr. Shelton founded the Georgia Tech Strategic Energy Initiative in 2004 with a mission to actively engage industry to facilitate short term, high impact energy technology development and commercialization. His current research interests include the use of natural gas for power generation and transportation applications.