Outreach & Education
Supply, conversion, and end-use make up the central challenge facing a generation of energy researchers, technologists, investors, policy makers, educators, and students. The magnitude of this challenge is large by any metric. Globally we consume 68 Quads of electricity annually, which is equivalent to continuously powering 50 trillion light bulbs or about 7 light bulbs per person. In the next 15 years, the investment in energy will be larger than the national debt ($14.8T), the estimated net worth of Bill Gates ($0.06T), and more than was invested in the wartime efforts of the Manhattan Project ($0.023T). Climate change and the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere require a massive transition away from fossil fuels to carbon-free power technologies. Around the world, the population is growing. Food and clean water are increasingly in demand and more and more cars are on the road each year. All of these elements result in an ever-increasing demand for energy.
Historically, we have looked to innovation, invention, science, and engineering to surmount pressing challenges. The energy challenge demands more still. Coordinated efforts in business, technology, and policy will contribute substantially to the solution. In order to succeed, energy innovators must be grounded in engineering, able to transition technologies to market, and actively remain engaged in shaping the energy policy of the future. The need for leaders and innovators with broad talents has never been clearer.
This message has never resonated more strongly than it does with the current students. Throughout the nation, cross-disciplinary energy clubs at schools are forming and growing at an unprecedented rate. To date, more than 20,000 students around the world have self-organized and formed over 80 university clubs to initiate grassroots movements on their campuses to educate people, develop programs, and deploy the next generation of energy solutions.
While the scale of the energy challenge remains daunting, there has never been more optimism and willingness to take action than with students. The passion for changing the world found at universities is one of the greatest assets of our nation. New energy curriculum is being developed to inspire students and provide them with the skills and knowledge necessary to be effective. The next step involves taking the passion and knowledge gained at the university and delivering it to students at local elementary, junior high, and high schools.
Commitment of STEEL
STEEL is committed to promoting energy innovation from the ground up. This means engaging the local community at every level with the goal of generating interest and awareness towards the world’s energy challenges. STEEL has partnered with the Energy Club at Georgia Tech to create an outreach platform for the local community as well as tap into a network of energy clubs around the world.