Environmental Impact & Upgrading

The Duke GVC Center has conducted a number of studies that focus on reducing environmental impacts.

The Solar Economy: Widespread Benefits for North Carolina

Manufacturing Climate Change Gary Gereffi & Marcy Lowe, CGGC

Gary Gereffi and Marcy Lowe discuss Duke CGGC’s research on economic and job opportunities associated with green technologies in this conference presentation.; Conference: Good Jobs, Green Jobs Conference
Conference Organizer: Blue Green Alliance
Location: Washington, DC; Date: February 5, 2009; Presenters: Gary Gereffi, Marcy Lowe; www.cggc.duke.edu

US Coal and the Technology Innovation Frontier: What Role Does Coal Play in our Energy Future?

The U.S. coal industry is coping with declining consumption as the nation burns less coal to generate electricity. The electric power sector drives coal demand and consumes over 90% of coal production. The coal industry is facing a number of challenges that include increasing production costs and competition from natural gas in the electric power market. The decreasing share of coal in power generation implies that the future of coal depends on technologies that change the way we manage and use coal such as carbon capture and utilization, coal gasification and coal liquefaction technologies. This report was prepared for the Bank of America partnership.

Authors of the report gave a briefing presentation on July 17, 2012 in Washington, DC. The presentation gives an overview of the coal industry. Affected companies discussed how they are responding to trends and technology and policy paths that would allow coal to remain an affordable energy source while addressing environmental impacts.

Dan Vermeer and Josh Seidenfeld’s article, Coal Use Rising Internationally, Environmentalists Must Shape its Course in the Energy Collective (March 27, 2013) references the report.

Geosynthetics: Coastal Management Applications in the Gulf of Mexico

Coastal management projects to restore the Gulf Coast nearly all use geosynthetics-polymer-based materials that can improve structure performance, reduce project time and cost, and lessen environmental impact. This study for the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) analyzes 84 firms linked to geosynthetics and coastal management, providing jobs in the five Gulf Coast states and 31 others.

View EDF’s press release from July 26, 2012 regarding the report.

Restoring Gulf Oyster Reefs: Opportunities for Innovation

Several natural and man-made stressors are destroying Gulf Coast oyster reefs, jeopardizing a resource that protects the shore, filters water, and increases marine fisheries production. Restoring oyster reefs will maintain these valuable ecosystem services, and support a network of 132 innovative small and medium sized businesses across 22 states. View EDF page on Restoring the Mississippi River Delta.

Smart Grid and the North Carolina Business Community

Presentation for the NC Smart Grid Technical Forum, Charlotte, May 1-2.

Restoring the Gulf Coast: New Markets for Established Firms

Natural and human activities have damaged the Gulf Coast, threatening a valuable ecosystem vital to several billion-dollar industries such as seafood and tourism. Restoring the Gulf Coast can protect these assets while creating much-needed U.S. jobs, by engaging at least 140 firms across nearly 400 locations. View EDF page on Restoring the Mississippi River Delta.

Smart Grid in the Research Triangle: the Who and the What

Smart Grid: Core Firms in the Research Triangle Region, North Carolina

The Research Triangle is a smart grid hotspot, with specialized R&D centers, supportive government policies, and roughly 60 core firms whose capabilities stretch across the entire value chain. Research for this report was funded by NC State University’s Institute for Emerging Issues faculty fellows program, and prepared for the Research Triangle Regional Partnership.

CleanTechnica published an article related to the report on March 14, 2012 entitled “Is North Carolina’s Research Triangle the Smart Grid’s Silicon Valley?”