Eco-Living Magazine

Dr. Stephen Chu Steps Down as Head of Energy Department

Posted on the 01 February 2013 by 2ndgreenrevolution @2ndgreenrev

Following the lead of other cabinet officials, Dr. Stephen Chu submitted his resignation from the Department of Energy (DOE). Chu, a former academic from the University of California Berkeley and past winner of the Nobel Prize for Physics, stepped down today. He led the DOE during President Obama’s first term in office. Like many other cabinet officials, Chu is leaving his position as the president’s second term gets under way.

The letter that Chu wrote to employees of the DOE was posted on earlier today. In it, he stated “Serving the country as Secretary of Energy, and working alongside such an extraordinary team of people at the Department, has been the greatest privilege of my life.” Additionally, the letter contains a long list of accomplishments achieved during Chu’s tenure. Here are a few highlights from his resignation letter:

  • The founding of the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy
  • The SunShot Challenge, which called for reducing the full cost of utility scale solar energy to $1/watt
  • EV Everywhere Challenge, with the goal to achieve plug-in hybrids or EVs with a 100 mile range at the same cost of owning and operating a comparable sized internal combustion engine car with 40 miles/gallon for 5 years.
  • The Department has helped one million low income homeowners weatherize their homes. The President’s Better Buildings Challenge which has secured $2 billion in commitments from more than 100 major companies, universities, hospitals, retailers, cities and states to upgrade 2 billion square feet of commercial and industrial space by 2020. To put that in perspective, that’s more than 400 times the square footage of the Sears Tower (now official Willis Tower) in Chicago.
  • The first nuclear power plants in the last three decades
  • Wind farms, solar photovoltaic and concentrating solar power plants that will be among the largest in the world.
  • Greatly accelerated the development and finalization of standards on more than 40 household and commercial products – standards that are conservatively estimated to save consumers a total of $350 billion through 2030.
  • Nuclear security teams have removed 1,340 kilograms of highly enriched uranium and 35 kilograms of plutonium from vulnerable sites throughout the world—enough material for approximately 55 nuclear weapons – including cleaning out 8 countries of all highly enriched uranium.

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