Archive for February 22nd, 2023

February 22 Energy News

February 22, 2023


¶ “What Europe Showed The World About Renewable Energy” • One year ago, on the cusp of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, it seemed unimaginable that renewable energy in Europe could overtake electricity from oil and gas. But not even a year later, it did. By the end of 2022, wind and solar combined overtook natural gas in electricity generation. [Vox]

Wind turbines (, CC0)

Science and Technology:

¶ “Volkswagen Develops More Efficient Drivetrain Components For Electric Cars” • To push an EV down the road using only battery power requires that electricity be used as efficiently as possible. Volkswagen says that its engineers have designed new powertrain components for its EVs that are more efficient than what has been in use. [CleanTechnica]


¶ “Antarctic Sea Ice Hit Record Lows Again. Scientists Wonder If It’s ‘The Beginning Of The End’” • Antarctic sea ice has reached record low levels for the second time in two years, with some scientists alarmed that dramatic drops are a signal the climate crisis may now be more clearly influencing this vast, complex and isolated region. [CNN]

Penguins, but no snow (Derek Oyen, Unsplash)

¶ “Venice Canals Run Dry Amid Fears Italy May Face Another Drought” • Weeks of dry winter weather have raised concerns that Italy could face another drought after the emergency of last summer. The Alps have had less than half of the normal snowfall, scientists and environmental groups say. The drought has even had effects on canals in Venice. [CNN]

¶ “How The Climate Crisis Is Threatening Tequila” • Warming temperatures have become a growing concern for the Mexican long-nosed bat. “You wouldn’t have tequila if you had no bats, because that’s the only thing that pollinates the agave plant that makes tequila,” said Ron Magill, the communications director and a wildlife expert at Zoo Miami. [CNN]

Inspecting agave (David García Sandoval, Unsplash)

¶ “Netherlands Starts The Year With A 15% BEV Share” • In a recovering overall market in the Netherlands (+7% year on year), battery EVs surged +62% YOY in January, to 5,010 registrations. They started the year with 15% market share – their best January ever. Plugin hybrid EVs were down by 4%, to 3,890 registrations for a 12% market share. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Heat Pump Mania Is Sweeping The World” • The heat pump has gone from curiosity to the hottest thing on everyone’s wish list. Why is that? Because people in places like Maine and Alaska are tired of draining their bank accounts each month to pay for heating oil and propane. And in Europe, people are very aware of a need to stop using natural gas. [CleanTechnica]

Please click on the image to enlarge it. (State of Rhode Island)

¶ “The UK’s £450 Million Boiler Upgrade Scheme Is Failing To Deliver” • A scheme to encourage UK households to upgrade their gas boilers to heat pumps and other low-carbon alternatives is failing to deliver after suffering a “disappointingly low” take-up, a parliamentary report has said. The programs will need a boost to meet its goals. [The Guardian]

¶ “NSW Announces $1.5 Billion Clean Energy Superpower Fund To Fast Track Renewable Energy” • Many households in New South Wales are unable to get the most out of their solar systems due to network constraints. The government has set up a $1.5 billion Clean Energy Superpower Fund to address this and other similar issues. [Energy Matters]

Solar plant in NSW (Jeremy Buckingham, CC-BY-SA 2.0)

¶ “Warning To Keep Nuclear Energy Plants Out Of Scotland” • The SNP’s Westminster energy spokesman said, “If the Tories think they will bring down energy bills by building nuclear power stations that won’t be ready for years to come then they are more delusional than we thought.” The warning went to the new energy minister, an Aberdeeshire MP. [Aberdeen Live]


¶ “Electric RVing Could Be A Lot Cleaner At This Solar-Equipped RV Park” • Thousand Trails, the operator of RV campgrounds and resorts, with more than 80 locations in 23 states and British Columbia, has installed a new premium RV storage section at the Wilderness Lakes Campground in Menifee, California. It has a capacity of 1,469 kW. [CleanTechnica]

Thousand Trails Wilderness Lakes RV area (Thousand Trails image)

¶ “Tracking The Post-IRA Boom In The US EV Supply Chain” • The Inflation Reduction Act is a grand experiment in how the US government can accelerate the clean energy transition and spur the industrial sectors needed to support it. A project measuring how consequential the IRA has been for the US EV industry has a lot to report after six months. [CleanTechnica]

¶ “Republican Operatives Are Astroturfing Opposition To Solar Power” • Some grassroots groups opposed to local solar projects have something in common: a group in Virginia with powerful GOP connections. Citizens for Responsible Solar gives advice on strategy, according to an expose by National Public Radio and news collective Floodlight. [Yahoo News]

Solar system (, CC0)

¶ “Eleven States Have Committed To 100% Clean Electricity” • On February 7, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed into law a clean energy bill that requires the state’s utilities to get 100% of their electricity from carbon-free energy sources by 2040. The state has joined ten others with commitments to 100% clean or renewable energy. [Environment America]

¶ “Constellation Is Spending $800 Million To Upgrade Two Nuclear Power Plants” • Upgrades will be made at the Byron and Braidwood nuclear power plants. Constellation Energy says it will increase generating capacity by 135 MW in the next six years with an $800 million investment in new turbines. Support is coming from state and local governments. [WCMY]

Have an unpretentiously sublime day.

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