Wednesday, June 3, 2009
5:45 p.m. – Networking Reception
6:30 p.m. – Presentation
You’re invited to a discussion session entitled “Green Star State: How Texas Can Get Rich Leading the Green Energy Revolution” presented by Dr. Michael Webber, associate director of the Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy and assistant professor of mechanical engineering at The University of Texas at Austin.
Dr. Webber’s presentation will focus on how Texas can lead the green energy transition and make money doing it.
While Texans constitute eight percent of the U.S. population, they’re responsible for more than 10 percent of the country’s carbon dioxide emissions — and a whopping 2.2 percent of global emissions. The average Texan consumes 66 percent more energy per capita than the average American, who in turn consumes more than the average European. If Texas were a country, it would be eighth on the list of the world’s biggest CO2 emitters, ahead of the United Kingdom and barely behind Canada.
Some of this consumption is rooted in Texas’ culture. In Texas history energy has equaled money; the more Texans (and everyone else) consumed, the richer Texans got. But the real force behind this consumption is that Texas does the nation’s essential dirty work — refining the country’s oil and manufacturing many of its products. As a result, industry consumes half the energy in Texas, a much larger proportion than in other states. Other states can criticize Texas for its energy consumption and emissions, but at the end of the day, they all want the products and refined gasoline that Texas produces. And, despite the general perception of Texas’ excess energy consumption, the state is already doing much more to promote clean energy than the world realizes.
Dr. Webber is responsible for training a new generation of energy leaders through research and education at The University of Texas at Austin. Prior to his current role, he studied issues relevant to energy, innovation, and national security at the RAND Corporation. He also served as a senior scientist at Pranalytica making high-fidelity sensors for homeland security, industrial and environmental monitoring applications.
Webber has published more than 20 peer reviewed scientific articles; has been awarded three patents; and has given more than 100 lectures, speeches, and invited presentations. His education includes a B.A. with High Honors (Plan II Liberal Arts) and B.S. with High Honors (Aerospace Engineering) from The University of Texas at Austin, and an M.S. (Mechanical Engineering) and Ph.D. (Mechanical Engineering, Minor in Electrical Engineering) from Stanford University.