Lena Hansen is a principal with RMI’s electricity practice, where she specializes in energy and carbon strategy as well as design innovation for electric utilities, heavy industry, and corporations. Lena’s research work focuses on RMI’s Next-Generation Utility Initiative, which aims to help drive the transformation of the electric system away from fossil fuels.
Work at RMI
- Electric utility planning and analysis—Lena is helping to drive RMI’s work around eliminating fossil fuel use in the electric sector by supporting electric utilities’ development and implementation of low-carbon strategies. She contributes to and leads consulting projects on demand-side management, end-use energy efficiency, renewable energy integration, and greenhouse gas strategy. She has worked with a diverse set of electric utilities, including most recently managing RMI’s collaboration with Duke Energy. Lena’s research has focused on managing the variability of wind power, including “firming” strategies and the impacts of geographically distributing systems.
- Industrial process efficiency—Lena works with manufacturing, fuel, and high-tech industries to develop engineering and management design strategies to increase the energy efficiency and sustainability performance of new and existing facilities. Most recently, she worked with a privately-held oil refining company on the efficient design of a new refinery, and has worked previously with the semiconductor manufacturing and cellulosic ethanol industries.
- Biofuels—Lena has worked with the state of Hawaii to assess biofuels potential and develop a program to accelerate development of a biofuels industry within the State. She has collaborated with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to conduct an expert design review of the biochemical cellulosic ethanol conversion process, and led a research project assessing the sustainability of various biofuels pathways.
Before joining RMI, Lena organized "Creating a Sustainable Energy Future: A Duke University Leadership Forum," a nationally recognized forum to begin a dialogue on the future of energy in the United States. The Forum resulted in the development of a graduate-level multi-disciplinary curriculum focused on energy. In addition, Lena has worked previously with the Alaska Center for the Environment and the Western North Carolina Alliance, where she focused on transit planning and education.
- Master of Environmental Management in Economics & Policy, Duke University, 2004
- Certificate in Energy & Environment, Duke University, 2004
- Bachelor of Arts in Physics, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, 2001
Donella Meadows Leadership Fellows Program, 2007-2008
- “Accelerating Solar Power Adoption: Compounding Cost Savings Across the Value Chain,” 2009, ASES National Solar Conference.
- “Effects of Longer Time Periods and Larger Geographic Areas on Wind and Solar Variability in the Next Generation Utility,” 2008, Windpower 2008 Conference & Exhibition.
- “Spatial and Temporal Interactions of Solar and Wind Resources in the Next Generation Utility,” 2008, ASES National Solar Conference.
- “Intermittent Renewables in the Next Generation Utility,” 2008, PowerGen-Renewable Energy Conference.
- “Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles and Environmentally Beneficial Load Building: Implications on California’s Revenue Adjustment Mechanism,” 2008, Association of Energy Service Professionals Conference.
- “Valuation of Renewable and Distributed Resources,” 2007, Electric Power Research Institute, publication pending.
- “New Frontiers in Utility Valuation of Renewable Resources,” 2005, PowerGen-Renewable Energy Conference.
- “Can Wind be a ‘Firm’ Resource? A North Carolina Case Study,” 2005, Duke Environmental Law and Policy Forum Journal.