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Energy Transition Lab

Passing the clean energy baton: MESA joins the Clean Grid Alliance

November 21, 2018Andrew ButtsETL Blog, FeaturedComments Off on Passing the clean energy baton: MESA joins the Clean Grid Alliance

From the Institute on the Environment blog, Grace Becker details how MESA (Midwest Energy Storage Alliance) has transitioned from the Energy Transition Lab to the Clean Grid Alliance (formerly Wind on the Wires). Read more here!

It’s akin to a moment every parent faces, says Energy Transition Lab Project Manager Barb Jacobs: letting go of a program or initiative, incubated and fostered inside of academia, to make its own impact in the world. It can be hard to let go, but with the right foundation and the right partners, it’s a transition that unleashes tremendous potential.

Critical Minerals and the Politics of Clean Energy Production

November 15, 2018Andrew ButtsEvents, FeaturedComments Off on Critical Minerals and the Politics of Clean Energy Production

Join the Energy Transition Lab for a thought-provoking presentation by IonE Visiting Scholar and Macalester College Professor Roopali Phadke on critical minerals and the politics of clean energy production.

Abstract
One of the grand challenges of the Anthropocene is to balance our global dream to electrify everything with the brutal fact that clean energy technologies depend on metals mined using nearly medieval techniques around the globe. This presentation examines the politics of securing critical minerals for climate solutions, in the context of a growing trade war with China. Dozens of new precious and rare earth mines are being prospected throughout the US to met the metal needs for electric vehicles, solar and wind technologies. These mines have also met growing opposition from Minnesota to Texas as communities express their concern for the devastating local contamination that might result. Roopali will discuss how we might solve this green energy paradox and the kinds of alternatives that are being promoted outside of the US.

Bio for Dr. Phadke
Roopali Phadke is a Professor of Environmental Studies at Macalester College and a Visiting Scholar at IonE this Fall. Her teaching and research focus on energy and climate policy, citizen science, community based research and sustainable development initiatives. She is currently the principal investigator on a multiyear US National Science Foundation study titled “Mining Futures”. With her Macalester colleague Christie Manning, she also directed a NOAA funded project on diversity and deliberation in urban climate adaptation called Ready & Resilient, which received a 2016 award from the Climate Adaptation Partnership and a 2018 Minnesota Campus Compact Presidents’ Award. Roopali also serves on several local nonprofit boards including with Northern Lights/Northern Spark, Climate Generation and the Water Bar.

IonE Director Jessica Hellman’s reflections on the 2018 Annual Meeting

October 30, 2018Andrew ButtsETL BlogComments Off on IonE Director Jessica Hellman’s reflections on the 2018 Annual Meeting

The Institute on the Environment recently engaged its community in the second annual meeting. Jessica Hellman, Director of IonE, offers her reflections on the experience and summarizes some of the strategic changes coming to IonE.

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