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Securing The Energy Future

Energy is critical to nearly all human endeavors

As the world population grows to exceed 10 billion this century, how can we expand the energy system to meet human needs in ways that are both economically and environmentally sustainable? Stanford Earth and other schools at Stanford are investing heavily in research aimed at developing new approaches, technologies, and policies for a reliable, affordable, and low- or no-carbon energy future. As we move toward that future, our research aims to help ensure that fossil fuels are extracted and used as efficiently as possible, with the fewest negative consequences, and in a way that complements the growth of renewable resources.

How our scientists work toward the energy future

The world will use 100 million barrels of oil a day for the next 50 years, despite the march toward renewable energy. Will we do that in an uncontrolled way? Stanford Earth researchers are developing greener ways of extracting oil and mitigating the resulting greenhouse gases. Read more...
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Our top competencies in energy research

At Stanford Earth, our five core capabilities transcend specific types of energy resources and can be applied across the energy landscape. Read more.

Meet some of the faculty who are helping to secure the energy future

Margot Gerritsen
Margot Gerritsen

Professor of Energy Resources Engineering

Sally Benson
Sally Benson

Professor of Energy Resources Engineering

Lou Durlofsky
Lou Durlofsky

Professor of Energy Resources Engineering

Mark Zoback
Mark Zoback

Professor of Geophysics

Tony Kovscek
Tony Kovscek

Professor of Energy Resources Engineering

Jef Caers
Jef Caers

Professor of Geological Sciences

Water and Power in the Pacific Northwest

A Sophomore College undergraduate field learning course

Stanford Natural Gas Initiative (NGI)

The revolution in natural gas production has changed the energy outlook in much of the world and thrust this resource into the global spotlight as a potential bridge to a cleaner energy future. It has raised hopes, along with concerns. Watch.

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Stanford Precourt Institute for Energy

A university-wide resource for energy research, conferences, and connections.

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Energy-related news

Microbial DNA can reveal water’s underground origins

Stanford researchers have sequenced microbial communities in samples of reservoir fluids to identify where water traveled through underground networks and pathways.

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Editor's picks: Top 10 Stanford Earth Matters stories of 2019

In a roundup that spans energy, geology, geophysics and Earth systems, here are some of the most interesting, high-impact and popular research stories from 2019.

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Global carbon emissions growth slows, but hits record high

Coal use is down dramatically in the United States and the European Union, and renewable energy is gaining traction. But rising natural gas and oil use in 2019 increased the world’s carbon dioxide emissions modestly for a third straight year.

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Tracking power plant emissions in real time

Stanford scientists have developed a precise way to measure U.S. power plant emissions 24/7. The new tool will enable grid operators and big electricity consumers to reduce their carbon footprint in real time.

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