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Issue #56 - Heavy-duty electric trucks, the Sun doesn't cause global warming, US Govt says EVs are officially cheaper to run.

The EV Musings Newsletter
Issue #56 - Heavy-duty electric trucks, the Sun doesn't cause global warming, US Govt says EVs are officially cheaper to run.
By Gary Comerford • Issue #56 • View online
Welcome to the first of the bi-weekly editions of the newsletter. I hope it was worth the wait.
In the week in which the sea boiled, parts of the Pacific North West of the United States baked and a Russian power plant exploded the impact of climate change and our lack of response to it is becoming all the more apparent.
Can we afford to do nothing anymore? No, we cannot.

This Week's Podcast(s).
The EV Musings Podcast: 95 - The New EV Episode
The EV Musings Podcast: 96 - The EV Confusion Episode
Top Five EV/ Renewable Stories.
Researchers Identify Near-Term Opportunity for Heavy-Duty Electric Trucks
We’ve said several times before in this newsletter that electric trucks have a future in terms of being battery powered. While most people consider them to be impractical for very long-range travel - such as cross country US trips - there is a subset of truck journeys where batteries can work.
Nearly 80% of truck journeys operate within 200miles of a base. This is easily electrifiable using a battery and this Twitter thread by Auke Hokestra identifies why
Now a new study indicates pretty much exactly the same thing. Heavy-duty trucks, or semi-trucks with a gross vehicle weight greater than 26,000 pounds, are responsible for around 15% of total U.S. transportation energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. Data collected by the U.S. Census Bureau suggests that nearly 80% of heavy-duty trucks operate primarily within a 200-mile range. These trucks account for around 50% of total heavy-duty vehicle energy use and are typically responsible for distributing goods between warehouses and nearby retail establishments.
A 2020 BloombergNEF report shows that fuel costs for trucks make up more than half their total cost of ownership. The switch to BEV fleets would offer a significant reduction in fuel costs and require less routine maintenance, another key advantage for fleets.
142 Tesla Megapacks Power on to Create Giant New Battery, Replacing Gas Peaker Plant in California
One of the benefits of renewable energy is that it is cheaper than fossil fuel energy. One of the downsides of renewable energy is that when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow there is no power. So fossil fuel ‘peaker plants’ are installed to provide energy when that happens.
However, a California county has decided that they don’t want peaker plants built in their county and have commissioned a Tesla battery pack to replace it.
This is an ideal use case for such a plant. It can power one town for four hours or the whole of the county for 30 minutes. Given the amount of electricity a place like Oxnard uses this is pretty impressive.
BYD ADL Secures UK’s Largest Ever Order for Electric Buses
Transport for London (TfL) has been quietly increasing the number of electric buses it has on its roads. With the recent acquisition of 195 single- and double-decker buses it brings the total to almost well over 400 buses - accounting for 25% of the RATP Dev London fleet electric
Having lived in London for several years ‘back in the day’ I can honestly say that I loved the old hop-on/hop-off ‘rear-entry’ classic London buses. But the amount of dirt, noise, and pollution they kicked out was horrendous. Anyone who has seen the state of some of the old buildings on the bus routes will know they are black in many places due to the pollution.
A move like this to increase the number of electric buses is excellent.
Why the Sun Is Not Responsible for Recent Climate Change
There is a school of thought which believes that it is the Sun that is making the planet warmer and, therefore, global climate change is not a man-made thing.
This article identifies several reasons why this isn’t the case. The main one being that the upper reaches of the atmosphere are actually cooler whereas the lower reaches are heating up.
The next time someone brings up the old ‘it’s part of a natural cycle’ argument to deny climate change show them this article.
It’s Official: US Government Says Electric Vehicles Cost 40% Less to Maintain
The US government runs thousands and thousands of electric vehicles and they have the data to show how much cheaper they are to run from a maintenance point of view.
In their calculations, the difference is about 4 cents per mile. As they cover millions of miles per year that 4 cents difference accounts for $78 million of savings per year.
That’s not including the cost of fuel savings through going electric. If you include that the savings skyrocket to well over $2 billion over ten years.
Not bad, eh?
A cool EV or renewable thing
Two cool things (as we have two episodes of the podcast to go through)
From Episode 95 -
Plastic waste in oceans has become more and more of an issue as recycling facilities struggle to cope with demand. There are rumours of huge floating islands of plastic waste somewhere in the middle of the pacific. But now a new invention could both reduce this waste AND become a source of emissions-free energy at the same time. The Manta is a dual function boat that is designed to capture plastic waste as it floats. However, unlike other boats that then transport the waste back to processing plants onshore, the Mantra will send the plastic through an on-board waste-to-energy machine that turns it into electricity to provide some of the boat’s power as it travels. The energy won’t be enough to completely power the boat but with sails and solar panels, the need for fossil fuels to be used at all is minimal.
This is just a concept at the moment but imagine if this works and then gets scaled up to much larger boats such as transatlantic cargo ships. That sounds like a great idea!
From Episode 96 -
It’s no secret that wind power - especially offshore wind power is one of the cheapest sources of electricity on the planet.
So news comes that Hecate Independent Power (HIP) has announced it will build an enormous, 30 billion dollar offshore wind project off the coast of Iceland that will power the UK using long subsea cables. The Project will consist of 10 gigawatts (GW) of fixed and floating wind turbines. They’ll be connected to the UK by long-length, high-capacity, high-voltage direct current submarine power transmission cables. The cables will be manufactured in the UK at a £200 million ($277 million) bespoke power cable plant that will be built at a port in northeast England.
HIP has made four connection applications for an initial 4 GW of grid connections – 1 GW per wind farm – to the UK’s National Grid. This project is calling the farms wind “pods,” and each of the four pods will be in a different location in the North Atlantic with its own subsea cable. The wind pods will not be connected to the Icelandic grid.
So lots of investment in cheap energy outside the existing North Sea and Irish Sea locations and upwards of 15,000 jobs to be created.
Something for your pocket.
As we approach the reopening in the UK where all restrictions on movement are being removed please remember the following two pieces of advice:
  1. Just because you have been vaccinated doesn’t mean you can’t get the virus. It just means you will probably not die from it
  2. We are nowhere near herd immunity in the UK despite having a largely vaccinated population. Vaxx deniers and immunocompromised people mean we all have to be vigilant out there. This is not a return to ‘normal life’ despite what some people will tell you.
Stay safe, everybody. See you in two weeks.
What's today's mystery link? You'll only know when you click it...
What's today's mystery link? You'll only know when you click it...
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Gary Comerford

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