October 30 Energy News

October 30, 2021

Opinion: 

¶ “Takeaways From The Big Oil Congressional Hearing” • Under withering questioning from Congress, oil executives bobbed and weaved, making no admission of guilt. But Thursday’s hearing marked the first time ever that the leaders of America’s biggest oil companies acknowledged, under oath, that their products are causing global warming. [Sierra Club]

Emissions (Kamran Ch, Unsplash)

¶ “The Oil And Gas Industry Knew About Climate Change In The 1950s” • Four years ago, I traveled around America, visiting historical archives, looking for documents that might show when the major coal, oil and gas companies became aware of climate change. They knew what the problems were in 1959. Now they are testifying before Congress. [The Conversation]

Science and Technology:

¶ “Solid-State Batteries Are Coming! Solid-State Batteries Are Coming!” • Two announcements suggest we are moving into the solid-state battery era. Solid Power and SK Innovation entered into a partnership to make solid-state EV batteries. And Hyundai announced a development agreement with Factorial Energy of Woburn, Massachusetts. [CleanTechnica]

Solid state batteries (Solid Power image)

World:

¶ “Australia’s 2050 Net Zero Emissions Plan Relies On ‘Gross Manipulation’ Of Data, Experts Say” • The Australian federal government’s 2050 net zero emissions plan relies on a “gross manipulation” of data that suggests trees and soil can absorb far more carbon dioxide than is actually possible, according to experts in the field. [The Guardian]

¶ “UK Wants To Be The First Major Economy To Require Companies To Reveal Climate Risks” • The UK is pushing ahead with legislation that will make more than 1,300 of its largest companies to disclose climate risks. The UK government said it plans to be the first major economy to require corporations to report climate-related risks and opportunities. [CNN]

Big Ben (Jurica Koletić, Unsplash)

¶ “Volkswagen Group’s In-Depth Conference Call Highlights Company’s Focus On Transition” • Volkswagen Group held its 3rd quarter shareholder conference call, and there is one thing the call made very clear. Even a glance at what Volkswagen is doing clearly shows that battery electric vehicles are front and center in 2021 and beyond. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “The Everyday Ingredient That Harms The Climate” • Much of Indonesia’s vast tropical forest – the third largest in the world – grows on peatlands, which sequester huge amounts of carbon dioxide. But the oil palm, a non-native plant originally from West Africa, prefers dry land. So the forest is burned, the land is dried, and CO₂ is released. [BBC]

Oil palm plantation in Africa (Marco Schmidt, CC-BY-SA 2.5)

¶ “Ireland To Open Its Second Renewable Electricity Auction By End Of 2021” • Ireland will have a second renewable electricity auction to support its ambition of having 80% of its electricity be renewably generated by 2030. The new auction has been brought forward from the initial timetable and is now set to be open before the end of the year. [Silicon Republic]

¶ “New Life From The Void – Another Coal Hub Repurposed” • In New South Wales, the coal-burning Liddell power plant is slated to begin closing down next year, and the Bayswater plant may follow. Hundreds of jobs will be lost. But a pumped storage project is to be built at their site, with solar, batteries, and green hydrogen, creating new jobs. [CleanTechnica]

Liddell Power Station (Webaware, public domain)

¶ “Bentley Travels 455 Miles Across Iceland On Renewable Power” • Using only energy from waste straw and the power of the planet, an engineering prototype of the Bentley Flying Spur Hybrid has driven 733 km (455 miles) across Iceland in a single stint. Bentley claims the journey is validation both of the grand touring range of its new Hybrid. [Tech Digest]

¶ “UK Renewable Energy Figures Shows Boom In Project Starts During 2021” • Renewable energy projects that started work in 2021 jumped in value by 70% year-on-year to over £5 billion, a report by Glenigan showed. And that number is set to increase dramatically. The government plans to have 40 GW of offshore wind power capacity by 2030. [New Civil Engineer]

Wind farm in Wales (Dara Jasumani, CC BY-SA 2.0)

US:

¶ “After Touch-And-Go Negotiations, Climate Emerges As Big Winner In Biden’s Economic Framework” • As the dust settles on Democrats’ $1.75 trillion economic framework, climate has emerged as a big winner. The framework crafted by President Joe Biden and congressional leaders includes $555 billion for climate and clean energy provisions. [CNN]

¶ “Supreme Court To Review EPA’s Ability To Address Climate Crisis and Regulate Greenhouse Gases” • The Supreme Court agreed to hear a case that was brought by Republican-led states and coal producers to challenge the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to regulate greenhouse gases and address the climate crisis. [CNN]

Coal-burning power plant (Wim van ‘t Einde, Unsplash)

¶ “New York Says No To Two Natural Gas Thermal Generating Plants” • New York governor Kathy Hochul’s administration has done something unheard of. It has denied permits to repower two unnatural gas generating plants. When it denied the permits, the Department of Environmental Conservation was following the New York climate law. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Pueblo Citizens Voice Concerns About Nuclear Power To Colorado Public Utilities Commission” • Nuclear Free Pueblo was formed to oppose nuclear power in Pueblo County, after it was suggested at a town hall event in July that nuclear energy could be used to replace Xcel Energy’s Comanche 3 Power Plant. That plant will close before 2040. [Pueblo Chieftain]

Have a brilliantly untroubled day.

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