In a piece for Ideas Lab, Matthew Stepp and Clifton Yin argue for continued support for DOE's recent Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative. Manufacturing has been an overlooked and underfunded component of the nation’s economic competitiveness strategy for far too long and it’s particularly important for the nascent clean energy economy. The Initiative is a significant first step on the path to a robust U.S. clean energy manufacturing sector and will be a boon to clean energy innovation as a whole.
Linking States to Federal Energy Research: Talking Energy Innovation with ARPA-E’s Cheryl Martin
The states are aggressively active in clean energy and offer a suite of support levers for later-stage deployment and market development. Yet most states do not invest significant public dollars in energy research, as larger programs like New York’s NYSERDA and California’s PIER are typically the exception and not the rule. So linking federal energy research with state deployment efforts is a potential fit. Matthew Stepp asks Cheryl Martin, from ARPA-E’s perspective, is there potential in it working with states as a potential end-user or collaborator?
Linking Research to Market: Talking Energy Innovation with ARPA-E’s Cheryl Martin
In the final part of an interview series with ARPA-E's Cheryl Martin, Matthew Stepp asked her to cover a pervasive issue in innovation policy: linking research and emerging technologies to market. In particular, a major concern of ARPA-E is that doesn’t have a dedicated end-user that’s going to procure emerging technologies, like DARPA has at the Department of Defense (DOD). DARPA is ARPA-E’s kindred spirit and many opine that until it gains a large-scale early adopter, its impact won’t reach that of its defense brethren because it won’t be able to bridge the technology “valleys-of-death” that plague many new innovations from reaching commercial scale.
Congress Passes Full-Year FY2013 Continuing Resolution
Last week, Congress passed the Full-Year Consolidated and Further Continuing Resolution Act of 2013, which funds the federal government for the remainder of the 2013 fiscal year. The new Continuing Resolution is not very different from the last one, but with the additional sequestration cuts applied March 1, energy innovation investment within the Department of Energy is down more than 5 percent since FY2012.
ARPA-E’s Lessons Learned: Talking Energy Innovation with ARPA-E’s Cheryl Martin
Dr. Cheryl Martin is the Deputy Director of ARPA-E, the federal government’s premier program for investing in high-risk, high-reward energy research and development. She’s the heir apparent to Arun Majumdar, the first Director of ARPA-E who departed last year after helping spin-up the program and bring it to national prominence. She assumes leadership less than four years into ARPA-E’s existence at an inflection point for the program as well as U.S. climate and energy policy. On one hand, government investments in energy innovation are declining and gridlock makes crafting a new comprehensive national energy policy a pipedream. On the other hand, ARPA-E recently hosted its fourth widely attended Energy Innovation Summit, a number of early investments are starting to show signs of success, and its bipartisan support continues to grow. It’s one of the few bright spots in an increasingly contentious energy policy debate. In the first part of a multi-part series, Senior Policy Analyst Matthew Stepp sits down with Deputy Director of ARPA-E Cheryl Martin to talk about her unique take on ARPA-E, its potential legacies, and the evolving U.S. energy innovation ecosystem.
ARPA-E Expands Pursuit of Transportation Decarbonization
Two new ARPA-E programs signals emerging government recognition of the importance of transportation decarbonization and the need for a range of innovative transportation technologies to facilitate that endeavor.