John G., Oni, John M., Akshara, and Alma (Isabel not pictured)
Our high school summer internship for 2013 included six high school students. Three of the students were recruited from Lindblom and three from the IIT Boeing Scholars program: John Gueringer (Lindblom), Isabel Raymundo (Lindblom), John Moosemiller, Akshara Sreedhar, Alma Valenzuela, and Onintze Contreras (Lindblom). We were particularly pleased to have Onintze and John G. from the 2012 internship program return for a second summer. As in the past summer, students were paired with undergraduate, graduate, and post-doctoral researchers on a variety of research problems. John G. and Alma worked with Vincent and Moyer to analyze the energy usage data from the City of Chicago’s Sustainable Development Division. Using the energy database the students explored the relationship between income and gas and electricity usage (higher income brackets using more electricity), the relationship between building age and energy usage, and electricity usage by building type (commercial buildings using the most electricity). John M., Isabel, and Onintze worked with Carey and Brizius testing different scenarios based on hypotheses they developed within the CIM-EARTH framework. Using the CIM-EARTH model the students explored how increasing carbon taxes would affect CO2 emission levels for different regions, the effect of trade embargos on imports from Latin America to the United States, how rate of carbon tax implementation needed to be on track to meet the Kyoto Protocol, and how increasing the efficiency of the steel and cement industries vs. a carbon tax could reduce CO2 emissions.All of the students attended weekly project meetings and the weekly Foster Children meeting. They gave formal presentations of their work at the end of the summer and online summaries of their projects (https://rdcep.org/summer-scholars-2013).
Working on the CIM-EARTH model gave us an opportunity to see how economics, public policy, and energy all came together. It really showed us that sciences are all linked together and revolve around problem solving skills. –Akshara Sreedhar