Thomas R. Casten, known as Tom Casten, is an American businessman, author, and activist known for his work on industrial energy recycling. Since 1977, Casten has founded and managed numerous companies and organizations associated with combined heat and power (also called cogeneration), decentralized energy, and waste energy recovery.
Casten is also a former U.S. Marine and Eagle Scout.
Casten was the founding president and CEO of Trigen Energy Corporation (a New York Stock Exchange corporation) and its predecessors from 1977 through 2000. He served until 2006 as founding chair and CEO of Primary Energy and its subsidiary Primary Energy Recycling Corp., which is traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange. He is now the founder and chairman of Recycled Energy Development, based in Westmont, Illinois. These companies have focused on energy recycling, a process that turns waste energy (usually heat) into clean power and steam. Casten has said his goal is to combat global warming in a profitable way, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and energy costs at the same time.
Casten has served as president of the International District Energy Association and co-founder and chairman of the World Alliance for Decentralized Energy, which are trade associations that promote combined heat and power, district heating, and other forms of distributed generation. Casten also serves on numerous boards for energy-related institutions, has testified before the energy committees of the U.S. Congress, and served on the informal policy advisory team of then-presidential candidate Barack Obama in 2008.
Casten is the author of Turning Off the Heat: Why America Must Double Energy Efficiency to Save Money and Reduce Global Warming. He has also published articles in outlets including American Scientist, the Detroit Free Press, Electricity Journal, and the Albuquerque Journal, as well as a chapter in Energy & American Society: Thirteen Myths. His work on energy recycling received profiles in Forbes, Smithsonian, Nature, U.S. News, the Atlantic, Orion, and National Public Radio. He is also a fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry.
- Lukenbill, David H. (30 April 2008). "American River Parkway Blog: Use the Steam". Parkwayblog.blogspot.com. Retrieved 20 October 2011.
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- Roberts, Paul. "Turning Off the Heat: Why America Must Double Energy Efficiency to Save Money and Reduce Global Warming (9781573922692): Thomas R. Casten, Federico Pena: Books". Amazon.com. Retrieved 20 October 2011.
- Casten, Tom (22 April 2008). "Find Greatest Energy Savings in Power Production Industry". Recycled-energy.com. Retrieved 20 October 2011.
- Casten, Tom (29 November 2007). "Bill Weak Without Energy Recycling Provision". Recycled-energy.com. Retrieved 20 October 2011.
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- "CSI Fellows and Staff". Retrieved 2 August 2013.