Chelsea Chandler

Staff Scientist (former)


Seattle, WA
chelsea.chandler@sei-us.org
+1 (206) 547-4000 x4#

Chelsea worked in SEI's Seattle office, focusing on developing tools to quantify greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction strategies and policies from global to city scales, conducting long-term scenario modeling, and analyzing offset methodologies.

Chelsea has a bachelor's degree in atmospheric science from the University of California – Berkeley, and a master's degree in global change science and policy from Yale University School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. She has also lived and worked in Latin America.

In her free time she enjoys soccer, snowboarding, water sports, hiking, and traveling.


Recent Publications by Chelsea Chandler

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Technologies, policies and measures for GHG abatement at the urban scale

Greenhouse Gas Measurement and Management, published online July 2013

Author(s): Erickson, P. ; Lazarus, M. ; Chandler, C. ; Schultz, S.
Year: 2013

Research Area(s): Climate Mitigation Policy

Description: As a greater fraction of the world's residents moves to cities, urban-scale policies will play a critical role in mitigating global climate change. Recognizing this role, many city governments around the world are developing greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets and action plans, but many lack the capability to prioritize actions and use mitigation assessment to set and a plan on how to meet emissions targets. This paper helps to address these gaps by (a) developing a general typology of urban-scale emission-reduction technologies and practices, (b) identifying policies and measures that can support their adoption, (c) assessing their relative abatement potential in the nearer (2020) and longer (2050) term and (d) examining the relative degree of influence that urban jurisdictions can wield with respect to realizing these potentials.
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A core framework and scenario for deep GHG reductions at the city scale

Energy Policy, in press (online March 2013)

Author(s): Lazarus, M. ; Erickson, P. ; Chandler, C.
Year: 2013

Research Area(s): Climate Mitigation Policy

Description: This article presents one of the first long-term scenarios of deep greenhouse gas abatement for a major U.S. city – Seattle, Wash. – and discusses innovations in community-scale GHG accounting. Using a detailed, bottom-up scenario analysis, the authors investigate how Seattle might achieve its recently stated goal of carbon neutrality by the year 2050. The analysis demonstrates that a series of ambitious strategies could achieve per capita GHG reductions of 34% in 2020, and 91% in 2050 in Seattle's "core" emissions from the buildings, transportation, and waste sectors. The paper also discusses methodological innovations for community-scale emissions accounting frameworks, including a "core" emissions focus that excludes industrial activity and a consumption perspective that expands the emissions footprint and scope of policy solutions.
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Assessing the Climate Impacts of Cookstove Projects: Issues in Emissions Accounting

SEI Working Paper 2013-01

Author(s): Lee, C.M. ; Chandler, C. ; Lazarus, M. ; Johnson, F.X.
Year: 2013

Research Area(s): Emissions Trading & Offsets ; Climate Mitigation Policy

Description: This paper examines methodological challenges in gauging the emissions reductions associated with cookstove projects. An estimated 2.6 billion people rely on traditional biomass for home cooking and heating, so improving the efficiency of household cookstoves could provide significant environmental, social and economic benefits. Some researchers have estimated that potential greenhouse gas emission reductions could exceed 1 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) per year. Carbon finance offers a policy mechanism for realizing some of this potential and could also bring improved monitoring to cookstove projects. However, there are formidable methodological challenges in estimating emission reductions. This paper evaluates the quantification approaches to three key variables in calculating emission impacts: biomass fuel consumption, fraction of non-renewable biomass, and emission factors for fuel consumption.
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Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions Associated with Consumption: A Methodology for Scenario Analysis

SEI Working Paper 2012-05

Author(s): Erickson, P. ; Chandler, C. ; Lazarus, M.
Year: 2012

Research Area(s): Climate Mitigation Policy

Description: In recent years, climate policy analysts have explored the links between consumption patterns and greenhouse gases (GHGs) by developing methods to estimate life-cycle emissions associated with different categories of consumption, e.g., a carbon "footprint" or a "consumption-based" GHG inventory. Implicit in many of the studies is the notion that shifts in consumption patterns could lead to reductions in global emissions. For example, if consumers were to shift their purchases from particularly GHG-intensive goods and services (e.g. red meat) to less GHG-intensive goods and services (e.g., grains and legumes), global emissions may decline. However, surprisingly few studies have attempted to construct long-term scenarios for how shifts in consumption patterns and behavior could reduce emissions. Here the authors develop a methodology to construct such scenarios, then apply it to a major U.S. city, Seattle, Wash., which has been active in climate action planning and helped organize over one thousand U.S. mayors to adopt GHG-reduction goals.
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Greenhouse Gas Emissions in King County

Report commissioned by King County, Wash.

Author(s): Erickson, P. ; Stanton, E.A. ; Chandler, C. ; Lazarus, M. ; Bueno, R. ; Munitz, C.; Cegan, J.; and Daudon, M., and Donegan, S. (Cascadia Consulting Group)
Year: 2012

Research Area(s): Climate Mitigation Policy ; Climate Economics

Description: This study, one of the first of its kind, quantifies greenhouse gas emissions for King County, Wash. – which includes Seattle – and gauges the community's contribution to global emissions from two very different, but complementary, perspectives: emissions produced locally, and consumption-based emissions. By the first measure, King County is responsible for 12 tons of GHG emissions per resident; by the second, for 29 tons per person. Most of the difference can be attributed to the fact that King County residents consume more emissions-intensive goods (such as vehicles and food) than they produce. The report also develops and pilots a framework for King County to track key sources of GHG emissions in years between more comprehensive GHG inventories, focusing on a "core" set of emissions that can be easily measured and over which local governments have relatively direct and unique policy influence: local building energy use, vehicle travel, and waste disposal.
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