Sustainability is a critically important goal for human activity and development. Sustainable energy is of great importance to any plans for overall sustainability, and a key to the sustainability of environmental systems. This is particularly important given the pervasiveness of energy use, its importance in economic development and living standards, and the significant impacts that energy processes and systems have on the environment. Many factors that need to be considered and appropriately addressed in moving towards energy sustainability are examined in this talk. These include appropriate selection of energy resources bearing in mind sustainability criteria, facilitation of the use of sustainable energy resources, enhancement of the efficiency of energy-related processes, and a holistic adoption of environmental stewardship in energy activities. In addition, other key sustainability measures are addressed, such as economics, equity, land use, lifestyle, sociopolitical factors and population. Conclusions are provided related both on options for energy sustainability and on means to enhance the sustainability of environmental systems.
Dr. Marc A. Rosen is a Professor at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology in Oshawa, Canada, where he served as founding Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science. Dr. Rosen was President of the Engineering Institute of Canada. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Ontario, and serves as Editor-in-Chief of several journals and as a Director of Oshawa Power and Utilities Corporation. With over 60 research grants and contracts and 800 publications, Dr. Rosen is an active teacher and researcher in sustainable energy, environmental impact, and energy technology (including renewable energy and efficiency improvement). Much of his research has been carried out for industry, and he has written numerous books. Dr. Rosen has worked for such organizations as Imatra Power Company in Finland, Argonne National Laboratory near Chicago, and the Institute for Hydrogen Systems near Toronto. Dr. Rosen has received numerous awards and honors.
Consumer ownership,natural monopolies and Green energy transition
In the Danish transition to 100% renewable energy, public regulation has to deal both with short term goals such as cost and price efficiency, security of supply etc., and the long term green transition from sectorised fossil fuel systems to integrated smart energy systems based on energy conservation and renewable energy. Making this combination of short and long term regulation efficient requires a multifacetted regulation where both economic incentives and organizational changes are needed. In this paper we will focus upon the combination of economic incentives and a revitalized consumer ownership model.
On both a short and long term basis consumer ownership furthers a drive for both low costs and low prices, and thus is the price efficient organisation for natural monopolies. In the Danish municipality and consumer owned electricity distribution system this has resulted in electricity prices that are 25% lower than average EU prices, despite that Danish prices includes subsidies to the green transition.
Going from a regulation of fossil fuel sector based systems to smart energy systems also requires an active public regulation in combination consumer participation in order to reduce the transaction costs linked to the many coordination tasks in integrated smart energy systems. Furthermore a well functioning consumer ownership organisation activates the consumers in such a way that they enter a learning process that make them both generate new ideas for their company and in a qualified way supports a green political discourse that also inspires the central policy makers and planners.
The conclusion in the paper is that an efficient and trransparent public regulation in combination with a welfunctioning consumer ownership organisation is a necessary base that leads to both prise efficiency and a learning process that supplies knowledge to a green energy transition process. And illustrated by Danish cases that new models for revitalizing consumer ownership can be established amongst other by means of the new tools of online voting and communcation.
Frede Hvelplund is a Professor in Energy Planning at the Department of Planning and Development, Aalborg University, Denmark. His background is Economics and Social Anthropology. He has written many books and articles on socio-economic feasibility studies and the transition to Renewable energy systems, amongst others several “Alternative Energy Plans” written in interdisciplinary groups together with engineers. He is a “concrete institutional economist” and understands the market as a social construction that for decades has been conditioned to a fossil fuel and uranium based economy. Hence a transition to a “renewable energy” economy requires fundamental changes of an array of concrete institutional rules, laws and market conditions. As a consequence of this understanding of societal development he has written several publications on the innovative feasibility study methodology which will be used in the SUPEEER project. In 2005 he obtained the Danish Dr. Techn. Degree, and in December 2008 he received the EUROSOLAR European Solar Prize in Berlin. Publications from the project “ Coherent Energy and Environmental System Analysis” (100% Renewable Energy in Denmark by 2050) can be seen at: www.ceesa.plan.aau.dk. Other publications can be seen at http://vbn.aau.dk/en/persons/frede-hvelplund(0e7e6b36-1e4e-483b-a317-3438f30029d6)/publications.html. Link to the Sustainable Energy Planning group at Aalborg University is http://www.sep.aau.dk/
Water Minimisation Via Integrated Planning And Management Of Water Supply And Demand
Clean water supply is becoming more scarce nowadays due to rising demand caused by growing population, climate change and widespread pollution. Providing clean water supply by using technologies such as desalination or membrane treatment are energy and cost intensive. Options such as rainwater harvesting also have limitations in terms of inconsistent supply, apart from requirement of water treatment. Water minimisation can be effectively achieved when minimisation options such as demand elimination and reduction are prioritised. This is followed by reuse/recycling, outsourcing and regeneration of water and wastewater sources, in line with the Water Management Hierarchy. Grey water reuse has long been introduced, while systematic techniques to maximise water recovery within an industry has been established via methods such as Water Pinch Analysis or mathematical modelling. In this lecture, the concept of exchanging water on larger scales across industrial sites are introduced to efficiently manage water demand and address water supply issues. The mechanism, economics, opportunities as well as challenges are also discussed.
Prof Ir Dr Sharifah Rafidah Wan Alwi, CEng, MIChemE, is the Director of Process Systems Engineering Centre (PROSPECT) of Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM). She is also a certified Energy Manager trainer and an Energy Professional under Green Technology Malaysia (GTM). Sharifah has been extensively involved in 17 research projects, 14 industrial based projects for various companies and government agencies and has trained engineers from more than 50 companies in the field of energy and water minimisation. She specialises in process systems engineering with emphasis on resource conservation. Dr Sharifah has more than 90 publications consisting of refereed journals, conference papers, magazine articles, book chapters, monographs and patents. She has also been involved as the editor of an indexed journal and has been appointed as reviewer for more than 12 international journals. Her work is also being commercialized as software products. She has also won first prize in UTM and national business plan writing competition and semi-final in Southeast Asia & Taiwan Business Plan competition, and has been active as marketing and planning development officer in two commercialisation grants. She received her PhD at the age of 26 from Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM), making her one of the two youngest PhD holders in Malaysia at that time. She was awarded the Maal Hijrah 2008 (New Year of 2008) Award – Glorious Achievement by the Sarawak state government and the Excellent Service Award by UTM. Due to her exceptional achievement, she was appointed directly to the post of senior lecturer in 2007 at Faculty of Chemical Engineering (previously known as Faculty of Chemical and Natural Resources). Her PhD work on water minimisation has won the 2008 Prince Sultan Abdul Aziz International Water Award, Urban Water Demand Management Category. She also won the Green Talents 2009 award from the Federal Ministry of Research Germany for her excellence in environmental research and was also among the five shortlisted candidates for IChemE Young Engineer Award 2009. Just recently, she was awarded Highly Commended Sir Frederick Warner Prize 2011 from IChemE UK that recognized individual in the early stages of their career that has shown exceptional promise in the field of sustainable chemical process technology, nuclear technology or in making chemical engineering more accessible to a wider scientific community. She was also selected as one of the two finalist for Research Award - Tokoh Penyelidik UTM 2010.
Benchmarking the performance of cities across energy, water and environment systems related metrics presents an opportunity to trigger policy learning, action, and cooperation to bring cities closer to sustainable development.