by Brian Anderson, Ph.D.
October is National Energy Awareness Month, when we reflect on the role the energy industry has played in our nation’s success. It’s also a time to look forward to continued energy developments that help our economy and the American people.
As an applied laboratory, NETL’s role is to develop technologies and push them into the market. We work with 900 partners, including those in the energy industry, to reach this goal and tackle large-scale humanitarian challenges of affordable energy worldwide with minimal impact to our air and water.
At NETL, our talented team of researchers take great pride in the Lab’s mission to develop technology solutions to enhance the nation’s energy foundation and protect the environment for future generations. We strive to be the nation’s world-renowned fossil energy science and engineering resource, and we’re well on our way to achieving this goal.
I’m optimistic about our success because we’re building on a foundation of technology achievements that have changed people’s daily lives. For example, NETL-commercialized technologies mitigated emissions of criteria pollutants and mercury from the air we breathe each day. Thirty years ago, research conducted at NETL and with the participation of its partners, led to development of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing — technologies used for shale gas production that, once commercialized, changed the landscape of the energy environment around the world. Thanks to commercial technologies that were made possible by NETL research, the United States is now a net exporter of natural gas and we are becoming energy independent.
We take pride in our past successes, but we are always looking to the future. Here are some of the technologies and innovation NETL is pursuing to enhance our economy and benefit the American people. For example, we are:
NETL’s research begins with the end in mind. The innovations we pursue are those that will have real-world impact by making energy production more efficient and resource development more effective, with responsible stewardship of the environment. I’ve shared just a few examples of NETL technology solutions that underpin our nation’s prosperity and protect our health and environment. There are challenges ahead, but our Lab is demonstrating every day that innovation is a vital path forward.