Before his job in Washington D.C., as the Secretary of Energy, Chu taught at Cal and Stanford. His research at Bell Labs helped him win a Nobel Prize in physics. He was also director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
And yet he told ABC7 News there is so much more to do by teaching again at Stanford.
"Young people have a natural curiosity and naturally want to learn new things and I too want to do that," Chu said.
He emphasizes, climate change continues to be his biggest concern.
The interview with Chu coincided with the release of a report Tuesday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which found that 2012 was among the 10 warmest years on record globally
Chu points out companies that protect the insurance industry are collecting data to prove global warming is having a huge impact on our daily lives.
"If you look at all the things, the storms, the draughts, the wildfires, the this and that, they seem they say it's been increasing, the numbers have been increasing," he said.
Chu says the federal government must do more to convince people if change doesn't happen quickly we'll be in trouble.
"This costs a lot of money. This costs a lot of money in financial losses, it costs a lot in terms of personal losses and suffering," he said.
Chu has been an advocate for more research into renewable energy. He says we're not too far from producing a lot of it and doing it cheaply. In the meantime, he is happy getting to and from work on his bicycle.