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Amory Lovins

Chairman Emeritus
Chief Scientist
Co-founder
RMI Trustee
  • Executive Leadership
  • Office of the Chief Scientist

Physicist Amory Lovins (1947), FRSA, is cofounder and Chief Scientist of Rocky Mountain Institute (www.rmi.org); energy advisor to major firms and governments in 65+ countries for 40+ years; author of 31 books and more than 600 papers; and an integrative designer of superefficient buildings, factories, and vehicles.

He has received the Blue Planet, Volvo, Zayed, Onassis, Nissan, Shingo, and Mitchell Prizes, the MacArthur and Ashoka Fellowships, the Happold, Benjamin Franklin, and Spencer Hutchens Medals, 12 honorary doctorates, and the Heinz, Lindbergh, Right Livelihood (“alternative Nobel”), National Design, and World Technology Awards. In 2016, the President of Germany awarded him the Officer’s Cross of the Order of Merit (Bundesverdienstkreuz 1. Klasse).

A Harvard and Oxford dropout, former Oxford don, honorary US architect, and Swedish engineering academician, he has taught at ten universities, most recently Stanford’s Engineering School and the Naval Postgraduate School (but only on topics he’s never studied, so as to retain beginner’s mind). He served in 2011–18 on the National Petroleum Council. Time has named him one of the world’s 100 most influential people, and Foreign Policy, one of the 100 top global thinkers. His latest books include Natural Capitalism (1999, www.natcap.org), Small Is Profitable (2002, www.smallisprofitable.org), Winning the Oil Endgame (2004, www.oilendgame.com), The Essential Amory Lovins (2011), and Reinventing Fire (2011, www.reinventingfire.com).

His main recent efforts include supporting RMI’s collaborative synthesis, for China’s National Development and Reform Commission, of an ambitious efficiency-and-renewables trajectory that informed the 13th Five Year Plan; helping the Government of India design transformational mobility; and exploring how to make integrative design the new normal, so investments to energy efficiency can yield expanding rather than diminishing returns.

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Basalt, CO

TWITTER HANDLE

@AmoryLovins

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Energy/Security Audience

Automotive/Transportation Audience

Architecture Audience

Chinese Language

Authored Works
Outlet Blog Post

Opportunities and Challenges for a Sustainable Energy Future

Originally posted as a comment to “Opportunties and challenges for a sustainable energy future” by Steven Chu and Arun Majumdar, Nature, 488, 294–303 (16 August 2012)  My friends Steven Chu and Arun Majumdar ably review above the achievements, prospects, and challenges of the U.S. Department of Energy’s R&D…

Outlet Blog Post

Don’t Suppress Military-Led Innovation

In this letter, Amory Lovins responds to the wave of recent news on the Senate Armed Services Committee’s disappointing vote to limit the U.S. Department of Defense from pursuing their ambitious alternative fuels strategy. The Senate Armed Services Committee, echoing the House, recently voted 13–12 forbidding the Department of…

insight

A Farewell to Fossil Fuels: Answering the Energy Challenge

Green Footstep is an online assessment tool for reducing carbon emissions from building construction projects and is publicly available at greenfootstep.org. The Green Footstep tool guides the user through the process of life cycle carbon assessment, and then reveals how users can theoretically reduce the net carbon emissions. Some description…

Outlet Blog Post

The Electric Car: Lighter, Less Costly, Plugged In

In writing “The Electric Car, Unplugged” for the New York Times of Sunday, March 25, John Broder and his informants assert that “enthusiasm over electrification in the industry has begun to flicker and the price of battery technology remains stubbornly high.” Yet they unaccountably omit the most promising…

Outlet Blog Post

My Response to WSJ’s “The Problem With Going Green”

David Owen continues to blame energy efficiency for the ills he ascribes to growth and wealth. His misunderstandings of “rebound” in energy use were devastatingly rebutted when he published them in The New Yorker, and now he’s expanded them to book length. But his post here lucidly confirms…

Outlet Blog Post

A Giant Passes: RMI Trustee Ray C. Anderson

Ray C. Anderson was the most visionary, inspiring, and effective green industrialist of the late 20th and early 21st century if not of all time. A brilliant Georgia Tech engineer and entrepreneur with the competitive drive and leadership qualities of an ex-quarterback, he created Atlanta-based Interface, Inc. and led it to unique success in turning green into gold.

insight

Reply to “The Efficiency Dilemma”

In this letter published in The New Yorker, Amory Lovins responds to David Owen’s article about energy efficiency and Jevons Paradox. This letter was published in the January 17, 2010 issue of The New Yorker and is reprinted with kind permission of the magazine. The original article, “The Efficiency Dilemma,”…