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U.S. industry energy-saving potential, 2010–2050

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-US_industry_energy_saving_potential
Increased adoption of energy efficient technologies as well as cogeneration and waste heat recovery systems will reduce energy use by an additional 4.7 quadrillion BTUs from business-as-usual. These and other changes (energy changes due fuel switching or transformation in other sectors) can reduce projected primary energy use by 27% in 2050.

 

Estimated water withdrawals in the U.S., 1950–2005

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-Estimated_water_withdrawals_in_US
In 2005, half of U.S. water withdrawals were made by the electricity sector. A “business-as-usual” U.S. electricity future will increase reliance on large thermal power plants and keep water demands high.

 

Electricity scenarios

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-Electricity_scenarios
In Reinventing Fire, Rocky Mountain Institute investigates the implications of four radically different future electricity scenarios - from a “business-as-usual” case to a network of intelligent microgrids powered largely by distributed renewables.

 

Historic and projected U.S. electricity demand, 1950-2050

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-US_electricity_demand
While U.S. demand for electricity has risen in all but four years since 1949, the rate of increase has been steadily trending down. The Energy Information Administration predicts an annual growth rate around +1% to 2030 (which RMI extrapolates to 2050). Successfully implementing the energy efficiency improvements in buildings and industry discussed in Reinventing Fire could reduce this to a steady –1%.

 

Emerging energy efficient technologies in industry

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-Emerging_energy_efficient_technologies
Based on Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) technology reports, a number of measures were considered for adoption. This table features a sampling of these measures, with information on each measure’s technical potential, associated energy savings, and cost.

 

Historic and projected CO2 emissions from the U.S. electric sector, 1990–2050

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-CO2_emissions_from_US_electric_sector
Rocky Mountain Institute’s four scenarios for the future U.S. electricity system ( detailed here ) all have markedly different projected CO2 emissions over the next 40 years.

 

U.S. price vs. rated efficiency of 250–hp motors

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-US_price_vs_rated_efficiency_250_hp_motors
Premium-efficiency motors are normally assumed to cost more because they use more and better copper and iron. Yet analysis of all models on the 2010 U.S. market, in this case for 250 hp (TEFC, NEMA Type B) shows this is untrue despite standards’ having knocked the least efficient models off the market.

 

Building energy use and square footage, 1950–2006

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-building_energy_use_sq_footage
Both building energy use and total square footage have steadily increased in the United States since 1950. Total building energy use has almost quadrupled, due to increases in building number and size, as well as the adoption of such energy-intensive technologies as color televisions, computers, and air conditioning.

 

Technologies that convert waste heat to electricity

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-Technologies_convert_waste_heat_to_electricity
Based on a Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) report on technologies that generate electricity from waste heat (and other waste energy sources), our analysis adopted the options summarized in the table.

 

Transportation sector job quantity impact

http://www.rmi.org/RFGraph-transportation_job_quantity_impact
In the transportation sector, Reinventing Fire affects jobs in oil exploration and production, auto manufacturing, auto parts and auto repair, and hydrogen and biofuels production. The net effect on jobs from these changes is relatively small.

 

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