Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program
Co-Principal Investigator, Energy Technology Innovation Policy
Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Senior Lecturer in Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School
Telephone: (617) 495-1350
Fax: (617) 495-1635
July 20, 2015
Op-Ed, The National Interest
By Henry Lee, Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program
"Cooperation between stakeholders and all levels of government to significantly limit fugitive methane is a win-win opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions."
The promise, prospects, and public policy trade-offs related to second-generation biofuels in road transport were addressed in an executive session convened at The Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan, on April 7 and 8, 2015. The workshop brought together twenty-eight of the world's leading experts from the fields of policy, science, and business for an intensive two-day session. This report is a summary of the main points and issues raised over the two days. It has been reviewed by all the participants. The summary is intended to reflect the breadth of the discussion, rather than to suggest any form of overall consensus among the participants.
June 18, 2015
Journal Article, Nature, volume 522
By Zhu Liu, Giorgio Ruffolo Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Sustainability Science Program/Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Dabo Guan, Scott Moore, Former Giorgio Ruffolo Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Sustainability Science Program/Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2012–2014, Henry Lee, Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program, Jun Su, Former Research Fellow, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program, 2001–2002 and Qiang Zhang
China is the world's largest emitter of carbon dioxide, accounting for one-quarter of the global total in 2013. Although the country has successfully lowered the rate of emissions from industry in some cities through improved technology and energy-efficiency measures, rapid economic growth means that more emissions are being added than removed. Without mitigation, China's CO2 emissions will rise by more than 50% in the next 15 years.
June 16, 2015
This April, the United States assumed the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council. The Belfer Center Environment and Natural Resources Program is releasing a series of policy briefs on the issues relating to the Arctic. This brief, focusing on security issues, is the first in this series.
November 13-14, 2014
"Commercializing Second-Generation Biofuels: Scaling Up Sustainable Supply Chains and the Role of Public Policy"
By Joern Huenteler, Associate, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Laura Diaz Anadon, Assistant Professor of Public Policy; Associate Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program; Co-PI, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Henry Lee, Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Nidhi R. Santen, Associate, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group
The promise, prospects, and public policy trade-offs related to the greater use and production of second-generation biofuels were addressed in an executive session convened by the Harvard Kennedy School on November 13 and 14, 2014. The session attracted more than 25 of the world's leading experts from the fields of policy, science, and business for an intensive two day session. The agenda consisted of three sessions focused on (i) the sustainability of cellulosic supply chains, (ii) government policy options to attract investment and (iii) government policy options to ensure that environmental objectives are met.
China has ambitious goals for developing and deploying electric vehicles (EV). The stated intention is to “leapfrog” the auto industries of other countries and seize the emerging EV market. Since 2009, policies have included generous subsidies for consumers in certain locations, as well as strong pressure on local governments to purchase EVs. Yet four years into the program, progress has fallen far short of the intended targets. China has only about 40,000 EVs on the road, of which roughly 80% are public fleet vehicles such as buses and sanitation vehicles.
Expanding estimates of North America’s supply of accessible shale gas, and more recently, shale oil, have been trumpeted in many circles as the most significant energy resource development since the oil boom in Texas in the late 1920s. How large are these resources? What challenges will need to be overcome if their potential is to be realized? How will they impact U.S. energy policy?
To address these questions, the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and two of its programs ― the Environment and Natural Resources Program and the Geopolitics of Energy Project ― convened a group of experts from business, government, and academia on May 1, 2012, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The following report summarizes the major issues discussed at this workshop. Since the discussions were off-the-record, no comments are attributed to any individual. Rather, this report attempts to summarize the arguments on all sides of the issues.
For the past forty years, United States Presidents have repeatedly called for a reduction in the country's dependence on fossil fuels in general and foreign oil specifically. Some officials advocate the electrification of the passenger vehicle fleet as a path to meeting this goal. The Obama administration has embraced a goal of having one million electric-powered vehicles on U.S. roads by 2015, while others proposed a medium-term goal where electric vehicles would consist of 20% of the passenger vehicle fleet by 2030 — approximately 30 million electric vehicles. The technology itself is not in question; many of the global automobile companies are planning to sell plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and/or battery electric vehicles (BEVs) by 2012. The key question is, will Americans buy them?
April 20, 2011
Op-Ed, Washington Post
By Henry Lee, Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program
"The bottom line is that the United States must invest now in the development and implementation of new energy technologies. We need a new menu of energy options, which means: stable funding for energy R&D; strong incentives to pull new technologies into the market place; and effective mechanisms to ensure that technologies have a chance to compete."
Transforming the Energy Economy: Options for Accelerating the Commercialization of Advanced Energy Technologies
By Venkatesh "Venky" Narayanamurti, Benjamin Peirce Research Professor of Technology and Public Policy; Professor of Physics, Harvard; Co-Principal Investigator, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Laura Diaz Anadon, Assistant Professor of Public Policy; Associate Director, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program; Co-PI, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Hanna Breetz, Former Associate, Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program (STPP)/Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group (ETIP), 2011–2013; Former Fellow, STPP/ETIP, 2010–2011, Matthew Bunn, Professor of Practice; Co-Principal Investigator, Project on Managing the Atom, Henry Lee, Director, Environment and Natural Resources Program and Erik Mielke, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2010–2011
"The focus of the workshop was on the demonstration stage of the technology innovation cycle. Current policies do not adequately address the private sector’s inability to overcome the demonstration "valley of death" for new energy technologies. Investors and financiers fear that the technology and operational risks at this stage of the cycle remain too high to justify the level of investment to build a commercial-sized facility."