Promoting education and research in Geology, Archaeology, Anthropology, Energy and Environmental Sciences.
|ISEM Energy Program|
Institute for the Study of Earth
and Man at SMU (ISEM):
DALLAS, October 21, 2003/PRNewswire/ -- The following Energy Policy recommendations have been sent to our national leadership by the Institute for the Study of Earth and Man at Southern Methodist University (ISEM at SMU) on October 16, 2003.
Under the auspices of the Institute for the Study of
Earth and Man at Southern Methodist University (ISEM), a group of executives
convened for a two day Energy Roundtable to address the nation's energy
status. The background, conclusions, and recommendations from that Roundtable
are summarized and put forth here as components of an energy policy. These
recommendations address present-day realities and encourage development
of technology to create the fuels of the future.
The functioning of our nation depends upon the wise and
prudent use of energy, yet our national energy supply is particularly
susceptible to terrorism and to international instability. Petroleum and,
to a lesser extent, liquefied natural gas (LNG), are actively traded internationally,
but there are frequent interruptions in supply, making for unpredictable
volatility in energy pricing. Therefore, the nation should strive to become
more energy self-sufficient. The most secure energy is derived from multiple
and diverse sources of domestic production. Achieving greater energy self-sufficiency
should be a fundamental long-term objective in which domestic supply,
obtained in an environmentally sound manner, and total demand come into
In the global economy, nations compete in varying ways. Some (for example, China and India) utilize productive low-cost labor. Others (such as OPEC nations) depend on the sale of low-cost natural resources. The U.S., in order to compete, depends heavily upon technology and utilization of large amounts of energy. To understand our energy requirements for the future it is important to analyze our current energy supply status. For the year 2001, the percentage of U.S. energy consumption for all purposes by fuel source was approximately as follows:
The last category ("other") includes geothermal, wood wastes, wind, and solar.
The U.S., with only 2% of the world's petroleum reserves,
Electrical generation consumed approximately 36% of the daily fuel needs of the U.S. during 2001, and the electrical energy generated by fuel source was as follows:
Only 12.5% of the nation's natural gas supply was utilized in fueling 8.1% of the nation's electrical supply. The percentage of natural gas electrical generation capacity is rapidly increasing as virtually all new facilities are planned to be natural-gas-fired turbines. Most natural gas (87.5%) is consumed by residential, commercial, and industrial users. U.S. and Canadian sources of natural gas are being depleted at accelerating rates and new drilling in the areas available for exploration in the U.S. appears to be unable to keep up with demand. Therefore, if increasing usage of natural gas for electrical generation is to be met in the near term, the supply must be diverted from industrial, commercial, and residential uses. A reliable future natural gas supply can only come from a combination of increased access to and drilling of prospective domestic areas, supply from Alaska and the Northwest Territories of Canada, and the increased importation of LNG.
With these facts in mind, the Roundtable encourages recognition of the following elements to form a sound energy policy:
I. Energy development must take place under a reasonable and predictable regulatory environment that encourages investment and is administered in the same manner in all regions of the country.
II. Environmentally sound renewable energy sources should be encouraged because they can contribute to lessening dependence on imported energy sources.
III. Energy conservation and efficiency should be encouraged. As one of the largest single consumers of energy, the national government should review its efficiency of energy usage, provide an audit of its performance, and display leadership by example.
IV. Energy research should be supported in conjunction with industry. Areas for consideration should include CO2 sequestration and hydrogen generation, storage, and utilization. Clean coal technology should gain a high priority because of our dependence on coal for electrical generation now and in the foreseeable future. Reasonable regulations should be established to encourage retrofitting and environmentally sound expansion of existing electrical generating plants.
V. To meet electrical energy needs, we should encourage diverse forms of electrical generation. Natural gas should fill short-term electric generating peaking requirements; large available coal reserves should be utilized to serve new base load generation requirements. Nuclear generation, which is currently in use, is underutilized in off-peak times and could be used for such purposes as hydrogen production (as in IV). Time-of-day utility pricing and improved transmission line capability should be encouraged.
VI. An objective set of criteria and a process for evaluating priorities for opening land to environmentally sound exploration and development of the nation's potential oil, gas, and coal resources should be implemented.
In summary, the United States is far and away the largest single economy and consumer of energy in the world. That is the strongest argument both for diversity of domestic energy sources and for conservation of energy resources. Moreover, with demand growth of our economy, the nation's capabilities for developing, producing, processing, refining, marketing, and generation and transmission of electricity should be enhanced. The Roundtable urges development and implementation of legislation to insure that the country's energy needs are met in an environmentally sound manner.
The Institute for the Study of Earth and Man (ISEM) at Southern Methodist University was established in 1966 to promote and support research at the interface of people, earth, and the environment.
An exercise introducing
3D seismic imagery
About his research
Modern 3D seismic reflection data contains an incredible amount of information. Backus is interested in methods of characterization, extraction, and display of this information. The fluid anomaly signal (angle dependent reflection anomaly and tomographic anomalies) is of particular interest. Synthetic examples of the fluid anomaly signal are illustrated in a simple seismic section and in a more realistic synthetic stratal slice. In real data, Backus attacks the major issues of velocity estimation, estimation of the variable seismic wavelet, handling multiple reflections and converted shear waves, and the application of display, interpretation, and inversion methods. The focus extends from the detection problem in undrilled territory, to the combined use of well data and 3D seismic data for improved reservoir characterization and reservoir monitoring.
|Board of Trustees|
|Student Research Awards|
|Hedberg Award in Energy|
|The contents of this Web site are the sole responsibility of the Institute for the Study of Earth and Man and do not necessarily represent the opinions or policies of Southern Methodist University. The administrator of this site may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.|