Oil and gas are central to the current climate debate in our warming world:
Oil Climate Project timeline:
Development of the Oil Climate Index
In 2013, Gordon assembled a group of researchers and initiated construction of the Oil Climate Index (OCI), an open-source tool that estimates, compares, and runs scenarios on the life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions of global oil resources. The goal of the OCI is to alert stakeholders to the wide-ranging climate impacts of different resources with an eye toward informing investment, development, operations, and governance.
The first version of the OCI was completed in 2015 along with her partners Adam Brandt and Jonathan Koomey at Stanford University and Joule Bergerson at the University of Calgary. The OCI has since undergone extensive development and application.
Gordon has conducted extensive outreach to stakeholders to present the OCI and its climate policy applications, for example, as the basis for Congressional legislation, Know Your Oil Act, in Congressional testimony on the climate impacts of lifting the crude oil export ban, in Norway’s reconciliation of its oil operations and climate commitments, and in China on its import ban of high-sulfur petroleum coke from the United States followed by India banning its burning nationwide. It has been peer reviewed and published in major journals.
The tool now forms the basis for the Oil Climate Project (OCP).
A more detailed history of the OCI can be found here.
The future of the Oil Climate Project
Gordon and her partners will continue to expand the components of the OCP, starting with its principal tool, the OCI. The third phase of the OCI, which will be completed in 2019, will include 40 global gas resources.
Through 2020, Gordon will write her third book. Despite remarkable advances in renewables, the sun and wind cannot fly planes, pave roads, or be turned into plastics, fertilizer, insulation and more. If oil and gas are in fact here to stay, at least through this century, decisionmakers will need to advance innovative policies and technologies that transform the energy sector. The novel will feature the OCI to chart an environmentally, politically and economically viable climate transition strategy for the petroleum sector. The book will be published in 2020 by Oxford University Press.