Research

US Energy and Environmental Analysis

In 2007 EPRI released its first Prism and MERGE analyses. These analyses outlined technically and economically feasible scenarios for the electricity sector to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions over the next few decades. The Prism analysis provided a comprehensive assessment of potential CO2 reductions in eight key technology areas of the electricity sector. The MERGE analysis identified cost-effective technology portfolios over time in response to a given CO2 emissions constraint. Both analyses have been cited in numerous national and international publications and provided thought leadership for the electric power industry.

In 2009 EPRI initiated a multi-year effort to develop a U.S. energy-economic model to assess the impact of environmental, energy, and climate policies on the electric power sector, the energy system, and the economy overall at both regional and national scales. The U.S. Regional Economy, Greenhouse Gas, and Energy (US-REGEN) model is a general equilibrium model of the national economy with sectoral detail in electric power production, energy demand, and transportation. The completed model has seen extensive use, most recently in analyzing the impacts of the Environmental Protection Agency's Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS), and the CO2 performance standards for new and existing units. The model is also used to look at the evolution of the electric sector under different technology scenarios, such as increased penetration of renewables.

Find out more about analysis related to the Clean Power Plan

EPRI Reports

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Product ID Name Published Type
3002011102 Systems Analysis in Electric Power Sector Modeling: A Review of the Recent Literature and Capabilities of Selected Capacity Planning Tools 05-Jun-2017 Technical Results
3002007497 Where Has "When" Flexibility Gone? The Role of Temporal Flexibility in Achieving Greenhouse Gas Abatement Goals 27-Jun-2016 Technical Results
3002008864 Interactions Between Power Markets and Emissions Trading: A Simple Example 20-Jun-2016 Technical Update
3002008653 Simulating Annual Variation in Load, Wind, and Solar by Representative Hour Selection 9-Jun-2016 Technical Update
3002008242 Technical and Economic Challenges of Flexible Operations: Case Studies of California and Texas 28-Mar-2016 Technical Results
3002006517 Program on Technology Innovation: Fossil Fleet Transition with Fuel Changes and Large Scale Variable Renewable Integration 02-Oct-2015 Technical Results
3002002333 Implications of a New Source Performance Standard for New Fossil Generation: A High-Level Bounding Analysis Based on the US-REGEN Model 27-Nov-2013 Technical Update
1026743 PRISM 2.0 The Value of Innovation in Environmental Controls 3-Oct-2012 Technical Report
Articles / Presentations

John Bistline and Francisco de la Chesnaye (2017), "Banking on Banking: Does ‘When’ Flexibility Mask the Costs of Stringent Climate Policy?" (Climatic Change).

John Bistline (2017), "Economic and Technical Challenges of Flexible Operations under Large-Scale Variable Renewable Deployment" (Energy Economics)

John Bistline and Geoff Blanford (2016), "More Than One Arrow in the Quiver: Why '100% Renewables' Misses the Mark" (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences)

Geoff Blanford, James Merrick, and David Young (2014), "A Clean Energy Standard Analysis with the US-REGEN Model" (The Energy Journal)

GHG Offset Policy Costs of Climate Policy

In 2008, EPRI launched a Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions Offset Policy Dialogue project. The project informs key constituencies involved in the development of U.S. climate mitigation strategies and policies about GHG emissions offset-related policies and design issues and offers a forum for discussion.

EPRI research examines the role GHG emissions offsets can play in an electric company's carbon compliance strategy and how offsets offer a key contribution to meet global GHG emissions reduction targets quickly and at comparatively low cost. So-called project-based mechanisms use the power of markets to supply cost-efficient GHG emission reductions to entities that need to reduce emissions.

EPRI Reports

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Product ID Name Published Type
3002000298 Exploring the Interaction between California’s Greenhouse Gas Emissions Cap-and-Trade Program and Complementary Emissions Reduction Policies 04-Mar-2013 Technical Update
1023811 Overview of Subnational Programs to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation: (REDD) as Part of the Governors' Climate and Forests Task Force 23-Jul-2012 Technical Update
1023662 "Blue Sky" Approaches to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions: An Initial Assessment of Potential New Types of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Offsets 22-Dec-2011 Technical Update
1023671 Case Studies of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Offset Projects Implemented in the United Nations Clean Development Mechanism: Learning by Doing and Implications for a Future United States Offsets Program 21-Dec-2011 Technical Update
1023673 Designing a Large-Scale Federal Greenhouse Gas Offsets Program in the United States: Policy Choices and Lessons Learned from the Clean Development Mechanism and Other Offsets Programs 29-Nov-2011 Technical Update
1022180 Aggregation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Offsets: Benefits, Existing Methods, and Key Challenges 31-Oct-2011 Technical Update
1023122 Key Institutional Design Considerations and Resources Required to Develop a Federal Greenhouse Gas Offsets Program in the United States 25-May-2011 Technical Update
1019910 Key Institutional Design Considerations and Resources Required to Develop a Federal Greenhouse Gas Offsets Program in the United States 21-Jun-2010 Technical Update
1017998 Key Issues in Designing Mechanisms to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) 13-Jul-2009 Technical Report
1015633 Key Issues in Developing and Using Project-Based GHG Offsets 23-Dec-2008 Technical Update
1014085 A Comprehensive Overview of Project-Based Mechanisms to Offset Greenhouse Gas Emissions 21-Dec-2007 Technical Update
1015463 Developing Greenhouse Gas Emissions Offsets by Reducing Nitrous Oxide (N2O) Emissions in Agricultural Crop Production 30-Oct-2007 Technical Update
1012576 Guidance for Electric Companies on the Use of Forest Carbon Sequestration Projects to Offset Greenhouse Gas Emissions 7-Dec-2006 Technical Update
Articles / Presentations

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Name Author Published Size
Existing Barriers to Offsets Project & Market Development and Potential Approaches to Overcome Them A. Diamant March 2012 1.59 MB
Overview of the EPRI-MSU Nitrous Oxide (N2O) Greenhouse Gas Emissions Offsets Methodology A. Diamant October 2010 975 KB
EPRI GHG Emissions Offset Policy Dialogue Workshop #8: Offset Project Development and Approval Processes A. Diamant June 2010 2.36 MB
The Key Role of GHG Emissions Offsets in a U.S. CO2 Cap-and-Trade Program A. Diamant April 2010 777 KB
Climate Policy and Offsets Presentation at London Energy Forum T. Wilson November 2009 1138 KB
EPRI Board of Directors Learns How International Climate Policy May Shape U.S. Energy Future T. Wilson November 2009 687 KB
Forest Carbon Market Presentation at London Energy Forum S. Rose November 2009 1046 KB
EPRI Board of Directors Learns About Greenhouse Gas Emissions Offsets A. Diamant August 2009 709 KB
EPRI Webcast on the 5th GHG Emissions Offset Policy Dialogue A. Diamant June 2009 2.22 MB
Key Issues in Designing Mechanisms to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Deforestation & Degradation A. Diamant May 2009 195 KB

Clean Power Plan Analysis

In October 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's finalized the 'Clean Power Plan', a suite of regulations designed to reduce CO2 emissions from the U.S. electric sector. EPRI has conducted extensive analysis on the potential national and regional impacts of the Clean Power Plan under Program 103: Analysis of Environmental Policy Design, Implementation, and Company Strategy. As of July 2016, EPRI is also working with over 30 utilities in eight states on state specific analyses. EPRI is a participant in the Energy Modeling Forum's exercise to compare Clean Power Plan models.

The Clean Power Plan offers many options for compliance. States can choose between rate- or mass-based targets, whether to trade or not, and have some discretion in the choice of mitigation measures they can include in a State Implementation Plan. How states choose will greatly influence investment and generation decisions, and the development of trading markets. To analyse all these nuances, EPRI has modified the US-REGEN model to represent the least-cost compliance path for all of the lower 48 states simultaneously, given assumed decisions on rate versus mass targets, and trading blocs. This provides a powerful platform for consistent analysis of many of the compliance options available under the Clean Power Plan.

Read an introduction to EPRI's modeling of the Clean Power Plan

EPRI Comments

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Product ID Name Published Type
3002007325 EPRI Comments on EPA Federal Plan Requirements for Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Electric Utility Generating Units: Docket No. EPA–H Q–OAR–2015–0199 11-Jan-2016 Technical Results
3002004658 Comments of the Electric Power Research Institute On EPA's Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units [CAA § 111 (d)] 20-Oct-2014 Technical Results
EPRI Reports

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Product ID Name Published Type
3002009492 Understanding Clean Power Plan Choices in Kansas: Options and Uncertainties 12-Jan-2017 Technical Results
3002009036 Understanding Clean Power Plan Choices in Michigan: Options and Uncertainties 1-Aug-2016 Technical Report
Articles / Presentations

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Title Author Published Venue
Potential Cross-State Power Flow Impacts of the CPP around Minnesota David Young October 31st, 2016 Minnesota Clean Power Plan Stakeholder Technical Meeting
The Electric Grid Revolution and the Clean Power Plan Video | Presentation

Francisco de la Chesnaye August 11, 2016 National Conference of State Legislators 2016
State Level Perspectives on the Clean Power Plan Francisco de la Chesnaye,
David Young,
Vic Niemeyer,
John Bistline
June 12, 2016 Edison Electric Institute Meetings 2016
State Level Perspectives on the Clean Power Plan David Young,
Vic Niemeyer,
John Bistline
May 10, 2016 ENV-VISION 2016
Cross-use of ERCs and Allowances by Mass- and Rate-path EGUs: Analysis and Simulation Results Vic Niemeyer May 10, 2016 ENV-VISION 2016
State Level Modeling of CPP Compliance Pathways with EPRI's US-REGEN Model Vic Niemeyer March 30, 2016 Midcontinental Power System Collaborative
The Clean Power Plan: Understanding Conflicting Modeling Results David Young March 22, 2016 Iowa 111(d) Stakeholder Meeting
Challenges in Modeling Rate vs. Mass Pathways for CPP Compliance Vic Niemeyer March 22, 2016 Indiana IRP Contemporary Issues Technical Conference
State Level Modeling of Clean Power Plan Compliance Pathways with EPRI's US-REGEN Model Vic Niemeyer March 16, 2016 Minnesota Clean Power Plan Stakeholder Technical Meeting
State Level Modeling of Clean Power Plan Compliance Pathways with EPRI's US-REGEN Model Vic Niemeyer February 11, 2016 RFF-EPRI Seminar on Modeling the Clean Power Plan

Costs of Climate Policy

International and domestic climate policies may cost on the order of trillions of dollars, but cost-effective implementation and technology advances can substantially reduce the cost of achieving the environmental objectives of these policies. EPRI's climate policy research provides members and public- and private-sector decision makers with analysis and information on the potential costs and benefits of global climate policy proposals.

EPRI Reports

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Product ID Name Published Type
3002011658 Social Cost of Carbon Pricing of Power Sector CO2: Accounting for Leakage and Other Social Implications from Subnational Policies – Discussion Paper 06-Sep-2017 Technical Report
3002004659 Applying the Social Cost of Carbon: Technical Considerations 20-Jul-2016 Technical Report
3002004657 Understanding the Social Cost of Carbon: A Technical Assessment 20-Oct-2014 Technical Report
1015510 An Updated Macroeconomic Analysis of Recent California Climate Action Team Strategies 29-Oct-2007 Technical Report
1012577 Program on Technology Innovation: Managing the Risks of Climate Policies 20-Dec-2006 Technical Report
1013315 Interactions of Cost-Containment Measures and Linking of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Cap-and-Trade Programs 5-Dec-2006 Technical Update
Articles / Presentations

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Name Author Published Size
Webcast Presentation: Applying the Social Cost of Carbon: Technical Considerations PDF icon S. Rose September 2017 956 KB
Webcast Presentation: Social Cost of Carbon Pricing of Power Sector CO2 PDF icon S. Rose August 2017 3 MB
Webcast Presentation: Understanding the Social Cost of Carbon: A Model Diagnostic and Inter-Comparison Study PDF icon S. Rose July 2017 3.7 MB
Updating Estimation of the Social Cost of Carbon Dioxide National Academies of Sciences, et al. July 2017
Understanding the Social Cost of Carbon: A Model Diagnostic and Inter-Comparison Study S. Rose May 2017
Climate Policy Implications and Opportunities for Nuclear Generation PDF icon V. Niemeyer January 2010 1.47 MB
Social Cost of Carbon Presentation for Environmental Defense Fund PDF icon S. Rose November 2010 909 KB
EPRI Webcast on Understanding Cost Estimates for the Waxman-Markey Legislation PDF icon T. Wilson July 2008 1.38 MB

Power Market Analysis

Climate policy can significantly affect returns on existing capital and on new corporate investments. Sound analyses and clear communication are critical to creating effective corporate strategies. EPRI research analyzes the potential effects of climate policy on the electric sector at state and regional levels in order to help companies incorporate power market impacts into business and compliance strategies.

EPRI Reports

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Product ID Name Published Type
1013296 A Conceptual Framework for Modeling the Impact of CO2 Policy on Generator Cash Flows 20-Dec-2006 Technical Update
1012577 Program on Technology Innovation: Managing the Risks of Climate Policies 20-Dec-2006 Technical Report
Articles / Presentations

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Name Author Published Size
EUEC: Retrofit Investment in Existing Coal-fired Generation in a 4P World V. Niemeyer February 2009 717 KB
EPRI-Western Climate Policy Impacts Collaborative Webcast #1 V. Niemeyer June 2008 1.13 MB
EPRI-Western Climate Policy Impacts Collaborative Webcast #2 V. Niemeyer June 2008 827 KB
How Climate Policy Could Impact Electric Sector Emission Trading V. Niemeyer April 2008 454 KB

Integrated Assessment

Climate policies will fundamentally change the economics of electricity and energy, and smart policy approaches can substantially reduce the costs of meeting the environmental goals of these policies. EPRI conducts integrated assessments of potential costs and benefits of climate change management proposals and impacts on national and international economies. Within these analyses, the research illuminates the role of technology in achieving climate policy goals, with a specific emphasis on the electricity sector.

EPRI Reports

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Product ID Name Published Type
3002011658 Social Cost of Carbon Pricing of Power Sector CO2: Accounting for Leakage and Other Social Implications from Subnational Policies – Discussion Paper 06-Sep-2017 Technical Report
3002004659 Applying the Social Cost of Carbon: Technical Considerations 20-Jul-2016 Technical Report
3002004657 Understanding the Social Cost of Carbon: A Technical Assessment 20-Oct-2014 Technical Report
Articles / Presentations
Name Author Published Size
Webcast Presentation: Applying the Social Cost of Carbon: Technical Considerations PDF icon S. Rose September 2017 956 KB
Webcast Presentation: Social Cost of Carbon Pricing of Power Sector CO2 PDF icon S. Rose August 2017 3 MB
Webcast Presentation: Understanding the Social Cost of Carbon: A Model Diagnostic and Inter-Comparison Study PDF icon S. Rose July 2017 3.7 MB
Understanding the Social Cost of Carbon: A Model Diagnostic and Inter-Comparison Study S. Rose May 2017
Valuing Climate Damages: Updating Estimation of the Social Cost of Carbon Dioxide New window icon National Academies of Sciences, et al. July 2017
EPRI Board of Directors Learns How International Climate Policy May Shape U.S. Energy Future PDF icon T. Wilson November 2009 687 KB
Feasible Climate Targets PDF icon R. Richels June 2009 447 KB
International Emissions Scenarios: The Role of Developing Country Participation PDF icon G. Blanford March 2009 386 KB
Revised Emissions Growth Projections for China: Why Post-Kyoto Climate Policy Must Look East, Harvard Project on International Climate Agreements New window icon R. Richels, et al. September 2008  
Scenarios of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Atmospheric Concentrations, U.S. Climate Change Science Program PDF icon R. Richels, et al. July 2007 12.23 MB

Strategic Energy Analysis

Strategic Energy Analysis, previously known as the Energy Technology Assessment Center or ETAC, conducts assessments of electricity sector technology needs with research focusing on interdisciplinary analysis of technology development, energy policy, and economic factors. Current research areas include:

  • Generation technology costs and performance
  • Technology trends and learning curve assumptions
  • Economic evaluation strategies
  • High level "reference cards" on key topics

The goal of the Strategic Energy Analysis research is to assure that ongoing debates among electricity sector stakeholders are based on sound technical and scientific information. Strategic Energy Analysis is supported by EPRI's Office of Technology Innovation, which identifies EPRI strategic research priorities through a portfolio of long-range R&D activities. This area builds on work previously done under the Energy Technology Assessment Center or ETAC.

EPRI Reports

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Product ID Name Published Type
1026549 Choosing Electricity Generation Technologies: Generation Technology Reference Card 5-Oct-2012 Brochure
1022782 Program on Technology Innovation: Integrated Generation Technology Options 30-Jun-2011 Technical Update
1023166 Impacts of Wind Generation Integration 6-Jun-2011 Brochure
1020389 The Power to Reduce CO2 Emissions: The Full Portfolio 2009 Technical Report 26-Oct-2009 Corporate Identity Products
1019563 Prism/MERGE Analyses: 2009 Update 31-Jul-2009 EPRI Journal
1018431 The Power to Reduce CO2 Emissions: the Full Portfolio — 2008 Economic Sensitivity Studies 11-Dec-2008 Corporate Identity Products
1015461 The Power to Reduce CO2 Emissions: The Full Portfolio Discussion Paper 5-Sep-2007 Corporate Identity Products
Articles / Presentations

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Name Author Published Size
Generation Technology Options in a Carbon-Constrained World S. Inwood June 2011 717 KB

Highlights

EPRI Reports

EPRI at the Paris COP21 Meeting

Steven Rose and Richard Richels are participating at this year's United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) twenty-first session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 21), being held from 30 November to 11 December 2015 in Paris, France. Three sessions showcase EPRI research and expertise, continuing our long history of involvement in this prestigious conference series. The sessions, with topic descriptions and speaker organizations, are given below.

Read more PDF icon (419 KB)

EPRI Releases Expanded Summary Report on "The Value of Innovation in Environmental Controls" for the Electricity Sector and the U.S. Economy

The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) released an expanded strategic analysis of key technology, market and policy uncertainties confronting the existing U.S. coal-based generation fleet over the next few decades on October 4, 2012. Today's release updates preliminary findings released by EPRI in May 2012. EPRI's "The Value of Innovation in Environmental Controls" analysis will help electric power companies understand the various environmental control technology options and costs they may face in the future. The report also outlines several key research and development (R&D) opportunities that can be pursued by EPRI and others to achieve the desired levels of environmental performance at a lower cost to society.

EPRI Publishes "Overview of Subnational Programs to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) as part of the Governors' Climate and Forests Task Force"

This EPRI report (PID #1023811 ) is available online. This report reviews the status of 14 subnational programs around the world designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and activities designed to increase forest sequestration (REDD+ programs). The report assesses progress made towards the development of nine essential components of REDD+ programs, and evaluates the potential of these programs to provide high-quality GHG emissions offsets that could be used for compliance purposes in emerging GHG cap-and-trade systems in California and elsewhere, or transferred into other systems of performance-based compensation. The report presents four detailed case studies of REDD+ programs. It includes the two states (Acre, Brazil, and Chiapas, Mexico) that have signed a memorandum of understanding with the State of California to link their REDD+ programs with California's new GHG cap-and-trade system. It also includes the state that has achieved the greatest emissions reductions (Mato Grosso, Brazil), and one of the most mature REDD+ programs in Indonesia (Aceh). For more information contact Adam Diamant at Adiamant@epri.com; 510-260-9105).

Articles / Presentations

Social Cost of Carbon Peer-Reviewed Paper Published in Climate Change Economics Journa

Steven Rose, Delavane Diaz, and Geoff Blanford of EPRI authored a peer-reviewed paper entitled "Understanding the Social Cost of Carbon: A Model Diagnostic and Inter-Comparison Study" that was recently published in the scientific journal Climate Change Economics. The social cost of carbon (SCC) is a monetary estimate of damages to society from global climate change caused by an additional unit of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere. SCCs are used to estimate the benefits to society that result from policies limiting carbon dioxide emissions. For instance, the United States Government (USG) developed SCC estimates that have been used in dozens of federal rulemakings and have been adopted or considered by states, public utility commissions, companies, and other countries. USG agencies are legally required to value carbon dioxide emissions in rulemakings to evaluate the potential benefits of carbon dioxide reductions from regulations related to vehicles, appliances and industry, including the electric power industry. The USG SCC estimates are one alternative for meeting this requirement. SCC estimates, however, are difficult to interpret and assess because little is known about the modeling that underlies SCC values or the implied societal risks from global climate change. The study reported in this new journal article conducted the first in-depth examinations of the modeling and raw results underlying USG SCC estimation. The study used controlled diagnostic experiments that provided detailed intermediate results, which allowed for direct comparison of individual model components and facilitated evaluation of the individual model SCCs. The study found that there are significant differences in the structure, implementation and behavior of various SCC models and also identified opportunities for improving SCC estimation and increasing transparency and scientific and public confidence in results. Slides from a public webcast on the study are available here. For more information, contact Steven Rose, 202.293.6183, srose@epri.com.

EPRI Staff Contributes to Study on Valuing Climate Impacts and the Social Cost of Carbon

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine held a public symposium on June 14, 2017 for the release of the print version of its study "Valuing Climate Damages: Updating Estimation of the Social Cost of Carbon Dioxide." The study is also publicly available online. Steven Rose attended the symposium and was a member of the scientific expert committee that produced the study. The report evaluates potential approaches for updating the methodology used for estimating the social cost of carbon for U.S. regulatory analysis to ensure the methodology reflects the best available science. The social cost of carbon (SCC) is a monetary estimate of damages to society from global climate change caused by an additional unit of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere. The study recommends replacing the existing approach and moving away from the current models off-the-shelf, developing a new framework in which each step of the social cost of carbon calculation be developed as one of four separate but integrated modules: a socioeconomic module, a climate module, a climate damages module, and a discounting module. Data generated by the socioeconomic module would feed into the other three modules, and the temperature changes generated by the climate module would inform the damages module. The development of each module would be based on expertise in each discipline to ensure the modules reflect the most up-to-date and robust scientific understanding. This approach would not only strengthen the scientific basis for estimating the social cost of carbon but would also improve characterization of uncertainties and provide greater transparency. For more information, contact Steven Rose, 202.293.6183, srose@epri.com.

Social Cost of Carbon Peer-Reviewed Paper Published in Climate Change Economics Journal

Steven Rose, Delavane Diaz, and Geoff Blanford of EPRI authored a peer-reviewed paper entitled "Understanding the Social Cost of Carbon: A Model Diagnostic and Inter-Comparison Study" that was recently published in the scientific journal Climate Change Economics. The social cost of carbon (SCC) is a monetary estimate of damages to society from global climate change caused by an additional unit of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere. SCCs are used to estimate the benefits to society that result from policies limiting carbon dioxide emissions. For instance, the United States Government (USG) developed SCC estimates that have been used in dozens of federal rulemakings and have been adopted or considered by states, public utility commissions, companies, and other countries. USG agencies are legally required to value carbon dioxide emissions in rulemakings to evaluate the potential benefits of carbon dioxide reductions from regulations related to vehicles, appliances and industry, including the electric power industry. The USG SCC estimates are one alternative for meeting this requirement. SCC estimates, however, are difficult to interpret and assess because little is known about the modeling that underlies SCC values or the implied societal risks from global climate change. The study reported in this new journal article conducted the first in-depth examinations of the modeling and raw results underlying USG SCC estimation. The study used controlled diagnostic experiments that provided detailed intermediate results, which allowed for direct comparison of individual model components and facilitated evaluation of the individual model SCCs. The study found that there are significant differences in the structure, implementation and behavior of various SCC models and also identified opportunities for improving SCC estimation and increasing transparency and scientific and public confidence in results. For more information, contact Steven Rose, 202.293.6183, srose@epri.com.

MSU-EPRI N2O Offsets Methodology Wins Key Approval

On April 2, 2013, EPRI and Michigan State University (MSU) announced the approval of their nitrous oxide (N2O) offsets methodology for use in the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) greenhouse gas (GHG) offsets program. The methodology makes it possible for farmers to participate in carbon markets by creating GHG offsets through reducing the amount of nitrogen used to fertilize crops. Agricultural use of nitrogen fertilizer results in atmospheric N2O emissions, a potent greenhouse gas. The offsets can be sold to other carbon market participants to meet GHG emission reduction targets or requirements.

EPRI and MSU developed the methodology as part of a two-year collaborative research project. Similar methodologies developed by MSU and EPRI also have been approved under the Climate Action Reserve and the American Carbon Registry offset programs. The MSU-EPRI N2O emissions offsets protocol is the only offsets protocol that has been approved for use by all three of these voluntary offset programs.

For more information, contact Adam Diamant, 510.260.9105, adiamant@epri.com.

EPRI Presentation on Potential Use of GHG Emissions Offsets from Mexico for Compliance in California

On 10/2/12, Adam Diamant participated in a panel discussion at the Carbon Forum North America conference in Washington DC that focused on the recent passage of Mexico's General Law on Climate Change. Mr. Diamant's presentation focused on the potential for GHG emitters in California to use greenhouse gas emissions offsets created in Mexico for compliance purposes in the evolving California GHG emissions cap-and-trade program.

Download the presentation PDF icon (553 KB)

American Carbon Registry Approves MSU-EPRI Nitrous Oxide (N2O) Emissions Offsets Protocol

On July 18, 2012, the American Carbon Registry (ACR) of Winrock International announced approval of the Methodology for Quantifying Nitrous Oxide (N2O) Emissions Reductions from Reduced Use of Nitrogen Fertilizer on Agricultural Crops . The methodology, developed jointly by Michigan State University (MSU) and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), makes it possible for corn farmers in the 12 states of the North Central Region (NCR) of the U.S. to participate in carbon markets by creating greenhouse gas (GHG) offsets by reducing the amount of nitrogen used to fertilize crops. Eligible states include: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. The estimated technical potential to achieve emission reductions using the MSU-EPRI methodology to reduce fertilizer rate in eligible NCR corn crops is 5-11 million metric tons of CO2e per year. The MSU-EPRI N2O offsets methodology was developed based on scientific R&D and field work completed as part of the EPRI Phase 1 and Phase 2 N2O Offset Supplemental projects. Read the complete ACR/MSU/EPRI press release online, and additional background information on the MSU-EPRI N2O Offsets Protocol . For more information, contact Adam Diamant at adiamant@epri.com or (510) 260-9105.