Elise Dupont / Teaching Assistant

TFL, iMMC, EPL, UCL / Energy

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In my PhD thesis, I am working on the physical technical limits of renewable energies. Indeed the main belief is that there is no technical nor physical limits to renewable energy expansion. With the right policies and investments it would be feasible to reach a fully renewable energy system while maintaining or current standards of living, and even pursue economic growth. By looking at the energy invested in the infrastructure and operation of renewable energy systems, I am showing that we will need more a more energy to produce our energy in the future. The possible implications are a shift of capital stock and workforce from “other” sectors of the economy to the energy sector, with a possible decrease of the economy output (i.e. a degrowth of the economy).
With my research, I would like to increase people’s awareness: we have to drastically change our present way of producing and consuming goods, because the technology won’t save us.
In my personal life, I try to do my best to reduce my ecological footprint, but I also do fight for social justice. My choices are equally driven by environmental and social concerns, as I believe these are indissociable struggles.
Regarding transportation, I mainly use public transportation and bike, and occasionally shared cars (Cambio, once a week in average).
Regarding food, I mainly go to local, ecological, stores where you can buy food in bulk (I participate to the “February without supermarket” initiative).
Two years ago we have changed our electricity supplier to be a member of a cooperative of renewable energy (Energie 2030).
I encounter more difficulties regarding my habits for clothing and traveling, as I continue to buy “non-ethical” clothes (except for shoes) and to travel by plane for my holidays.