May 14, 2022
Weekend Reads: The EV Race Speeds Up; Germany Trades LNG For Green Hydrogen
It's the weekend! Kick back and catch up with these must-read articles from around the web.
Mary Barra’s ‘Long Game’: Winning the E.V. Race (The New York Times) General Motors made a splash last year when it announced a bold plan to ramp up sales of electric vehicles and said it would stop making gasoline-powered vehicles by 2035. But more than a year later, some other automakers appear better positioned to lead the industry’s transition to E.V.s. Tesla had global sales of more than 310,000 electric cars in the first quarter of this year, while G.M. is far behind unless it counts E.V.s made by its Chinese joint ventures. It sold fewer than 500 E.V.s in the United States in the quarter. Ford Motor has just started production of an electric F-150 pickup truck and has taken customer reservations for more than 200,000 of them.
California Is Betting Big on Offshore Wind Power (Gizmodo) Wind is picking up speed on the West Coast. California plans to produce 10 to 15 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2045—enough to power between 10 million and 15 million homes, according to a report by the state’s Energy Commission released on Friday. The goal is the biggest of any state so far, surpassing New York’s 9 gigawatt by 2035 pledge. California’s SB 100, signed into law 2018, mandates the state reach 100% renewable energy by 2045, and offshore wind is part of the plan to get there.
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How Germany’s LNG Terminals Will Morph Into Green Hydrogen Hubs (Bloomberg) Germany plans to abandon fossil-fueled power by 2035. But instead of shutting down natural gas infrastructure, it’s speeding up construction of several new terminals that will allow companies to import the planet-warming fuel by ship for decades to come. The plans are aimed at breaking Europe’s reliance on gas piped in from Russia, of which Germany is the biggest buyer, after its invasion of Ukraine. Because land-based terminals take several years to build, the government has also rented floating facilities that can start receiving liquefied natural gas as soon as this year.
Nearly 15 GW of batteries planned at US solar, wind, gas plants in 2022, 2023 (S&P Global) Spread across roughly 2,500 acres of sundrenched land in Kings County, Calif., the Slate Solar Project combines a 300-MW photovoltaic system with 140.3 MW of lithium-ion batteries designed to discharge for up to four hours. Owned by Goldman Sachs Renewable Power LLC, an affiliate of the financial giant, the recently energized hybrid asset supplies five California clients with enough electricity for about 126,000 homes. It is the largest of more than a dozen new battery-backed solar projects added to the U.S. power grid in the first quarter, the initial wave of more than 100 such hybrid facilities planned to come online this year, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data.
How an International Power Grid Will Help Optimise Our Solar Power Use (The Wire) An early summer amidst a post-pandemic recovery period has India staring at a power crisis, with grid demand touching 207 GW in April. It’s a difficult time for India’s power sector also because it is in a transitional phase – with a marked shift from conventional generation to non-fossil-fuel-based generation – driven by escalating global warming and incessant fossil-fuel depletion. Such a transition, though, is happening globally, as countries try to balance their energy security and sustainable development goals.
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