Detroit Free Press:

General Motors will build an electric version of the Silverado at Factory ZERO in Detroit and Hamtramck.

The Silverado EV will sit on GM’s Ultium battery platform and will offer customers a GM-estimated range of more than 400 miles on a full charge, the automaker said Tuesday.

Both retail and fleet versions will come in a variety of options and GM said it expects there will be high demand for the pickups. GM did not provide a start of production date for the Silverado EV.

GM also is building the GMC Hummer EV pickup and Hummer EV SUV at Factory ZERO.

“The vehicles coming from Factory ZERO will change the world, and how the world views electric vehicles,” GM President Mark Reuss said in a statement. “The GMC Hummer EV SUV joins its stablemate in the realm of true supertrucks, and Chevrolet will take everything Chevy’s loyal truck buyers love about Silverado — and more — and put it into an electric pickup that will delight retail and commercial customers alike.”

In January 2020, GM said it would invest $2.2 billion in Factory ZERO, then called Detroit-Hamtramck assembly, to produce a variety of all-electric trucks and SUVs.

In October 2020, GM renamed the plant Factory ZERO to reflect GM’s vision of a future with zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion. 

GM has said all of its light-duty vehicles will be zero emissions by 2035 and the company will be carbon neutral by 2040.

Associated Press:

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The president and auto industry maintain the nation is on the cusp of a gigantic shift to electric vehicles and away from liquid-fueled cars, but biofuels producers and some of their supporters in Congress aren’t buying it. They argue that now is the time to increase sales of ethanol and biodiesel, not abandon them.

To help address climate change, President Joe Biden has proposed an infrastructure plan that includes billions of dollars to pay for 500,000 electric vehicle charging stations, electrify public vehicles and enhance the nation’s power grid. These moves follow initiatives in California and other states to mandate electric vehicle sales and a goal by General Motors to shift production fully to electric vehicles by 2035.

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Forget the think tanks and ivory towers of academia, or the centers of commerce and finance – the clean energy future that we need will succeed, or fail, bit by bit, in contentious meetings in small rural townships across the midwest and heartland, where clean energy projects are sited, or not, thru the ordinances passed by earnest but often overwhelmed township boards and planning commissions, who must contend with opposition that are a minority, but very loud, shrill, and often deliberately intimidating.

The meetings get a little animated, as this unusually vivid narration of a recent meeting from the Greenville, Michigan, Daily News.

Note: apologies but, weirdly, WordPress seems to be foreshortening my images today. go figure.

Greenville Daily News (Michigan):

MAPLE VALLEY TOWNSHIP — After hosting a stormy wind meeting in February via Zoom, followed by a vote to repeal the township’s controversial wind ordinance in March via Zoom, Maple Valley Township officials met for an in-person — but no less turbulent — meeting Thursday evening.

Three dozen people attended an unruly 90-minute meeting inside the freezing Coral Community Center (“We went over to Gratiot County and stood right underneath a turbine and this (Community Center) furnace was louder than that turbine,” Planning Commissioner Randy Davis told audience members, most of whom left their coats on).

The Planning Commission hasn’t met since last autumn and in the meantime John Schwandt, who was chairman of the Planning Commission, was elected supervisor of the Maple Valley Township Board last November, so Schwandt submitted his resignation as Planning Commission chairman before the start of Thursday’s meeting (as he can’t hold both positions at the same time).

The remaining four members of the Planning Commission (with Carolyn Kelsey absent due to illness) decided to make Roger Becker the new chairman and Andi Knapp — the newest member who was participating in her first meeting — the new vice chairwoman. As the Planning Commission began to move through roll call and reading previous meeting minutes, their quiet voices could not be heard in the spacious Community Center.

“Are you talking to us or are you talking to yourselves? Speak up!” a man yelled from the audience.

“We’re just doing basic stuff up here,” Davis responded. “Ninety-nine percent of you don’t even care about this stuff. When it comes to the wind, we’ll speak up.”

This comment did not go over well with audience members who began freely speaking their minds. An argument also ensued among audience members about whether the Planning Commission should have five or seven members.

“I think we should close this meeting, there’s more than 25 people here, ain’t that the law?” asked Maple Valley Township Zoning Administrator David Kelsey, who was seated in the front row next to Schwandt.

“That ended March 30th,” a woman in the audience responded.

The meeting continued with Becker reviewing some of the residents’ concerns that led to the township’s prior wind energy ordinance being repealed — sound limit, sound waves, height limit, setbacks (including setbacks around lakes) and turbine safety manuals.

Albert Jongewaard, senior development manager for Apex Clean Energy, was present and offered to answer questions from the audience — some of whom wanted to ask him questions and some of whom didn’t want him to speak at all. As Jongewaard attempted to speak, audience members spoke and argued among themselves and with Jongewaard at alternating volumes while members of the Planning Commission spoke quietly among themselves for a time and did nothing to bring back the meeting to order.

Only when audience members began standing up and yelling at each other did Becker attempt to restore order. Becker — who referred to turbines as “windmills” throughout the meeting — shared how he recently attended an Apex-hosted meeting at the Newell farm in Maple Valley Township. He said township officials want to hear from residents about what they would like to see in a new ordinance.

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Conserve. Conservative. It says so right in the name.

Above, my friend Ed Rivet…

Energy News:

The Land & Liberty Coalition is the latest chapter of a regional group trying to change the narrative on renewables.

A conservative promoter of clean energy has launched an initiative in Iowa to help counter local opposition to wind and solar developments.

The Iowa Land & Liberty Coalition, a project of the Iowa Conservative Energy Forum, will focus on building support for renewables in counties that have either rejected large renewable projects or considered adopting restrictions.

“We’re protecting private property rights,” sais Nick Boeyink, Land & Liberty’s Iowa field operations director. “There are lots of landowners that, with bad policy, wouldn’t have the freedom to receive income on their land. They should be allowed to do with that land what they please.”

Land & Liberty chapters are operating in several Midwestern states: Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Indiana and now Iowa. Boeyink said several Iowa counties are moving toward restrictive ordinances or moratoriums that could serve as blueprints for other counties. That was a large factor in the decision to establish a Land & Liberty chapter in the state now, he said.

Hardin County last fall unanimously approved an indefinite moratorium on wind farms. Today the county’s board of supervisors is expected to consider modifications that would include a half-mile setback from any neighboring dwelling. 

Madison County’s board of supervisors last October approved the state’s first moratorium on wind and solar projects. It will expire in October, at which time county supervisor Aaron Price expects passage of a new law that would outright or in effect outlaw wind turbines.

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More and more, the experts I have been speaking to are bringing up the progress in Geothermal, which has been quietly innovating on the back of the incredible advances in drilling practices that have been pioneered in the oil/gas sector.

For example, it came up, unbidden, in my recent conversation with Daniel Cohan at Rice University, who notes the potential for Geothermal to be a player in the wake of the Texas blackout debacle. (starts about 1:50 if you’re rushed)
Micheal Webber at U of Texas brought it up, unbidden, as well.

It may be that geothermal is ready for its moment.

Global News (Canada):

A piece of technology created in Alberta is pushing the boundaries of geothermal energy and drawing international attention.

The Calgary-based company Eavor Technologies has created a closed-loopgeothermal system that touts itself as the world’s first scalable clean energy derived from the natural heat of the earth.“It’s a new type of geothermal, this closed-loop. It’s on-demand,” explained the company’s chief technology officer Matt Toews. “That’s been a challenge with [other clean energy like] wind and solar.”

The system is described as similar to a massive subsurface radiator, much like how a vehicle radiator circulates fluid in a closed-loop to remove heat from a gasoline engine. It does not use fracking or water and has no earthquake risk. The “loop” is a closed network of pipes that are installed below ground and cycle through a facility above it.

Eavor deploys the technology around the world but the technical team is based in Calgary. There is an operational project near Sylvan Lake, west of Red Deer.

“Those are all the inputs into what we do. Instead of putting that into oil and gas, we are putting it into a clean energy source.”

In its fledgling stage, Eavor quickly caught the eye of Alberta Innovates, which looks to partner with researchers, small companies and large industry to develop within the province.

“Alberta Innovates is the research and innovation arm within Alberta,” explained Maureen Kolla, acting executive director for clean technology at AI.

“We want to help develop solutions that can help meet the challenges we face in Alberta, like diversifying the economy or meeting an environmental target.”

Alberta Innovates provided $1 million in funding to the $13-million project near Sylvan Lake, Toews said. He described the company as a “critical piece of funding” when the Eavor was first getting off the ground.

“It’s a bit of a snowball effect. You need someone to take the first step. It’s great to have a company like Alberta Innovates that is ready to be there,” Toews said.

In February, the energy firm closed on a financing round where it raised US$40 million with lead investors that included major oil companies BP and Chevron.

“That felt like a big validating moment from what we’ve been up to the last several years,” Toews said.

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Across the country there are hundreds of thousands of abandoned or “orphan” frack wells.

There are also, tens of thousands of unemployed oil and gas workers.
Putting them to work, plugging old, leaking, toxic and climatically harmful wells, in their own state and community, makes sense, and is a win-win.

It’s not just a good idea, it’s been happening in some places.

News report from KXMB in Bismark, North Dakota, above, and below, relates how this started with funding from the first Covid relief bill.
The planned Infrastructure bill would continue that process.
Below, my video explaining how this has been a through line for the Biden combined Infrastructure/Climate plan.

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Republicans get upset when you correctly label them deniers – but, Dude…

If we’re still in this nightmare a year from now, thank a Republican.

Dana Nuccitelli on Twitter:

Remarkable partisan symmetry in acceptance of the reality of human-caused global warming by US political party between 2003 and 2021.

Democrats: +20%

Republicans: -20%

Independents: No Change

Below, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell calls it “curious” that Republican Men won’t take the Covid vaccine.
Like, there’s some mystery here?

Subject of my upcoming Yale vid, coming soon, I hope.


WASHINGTON, D.C. — About six in 10 U.S. adults (59%) continue to say the effects of global warming have already begun to happen, and a similar proportion believe pollution from human activities is more to blame than natural causes for the Earth’s rise in temperature over the past century (64%).

Fewer Americans, closer to four in 10, are highly worried about global warming (43%), although another 22% say they worry “a fair amount.” More than four in 10 (43%) also expect global warming to pose a serious threat in their own lifetime.

In general, the public’s views about global warming haven’t changed over the past year, according to Gallup’s latest annual Environment poll, and are similar to what they have been each year since 2016. However, this stability masks growing divergence between Republicans and Democrats.

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How about a grid that doesn’t treat living beings as collateral damage?

Houston Chronicle:

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s $2 trillion infrastructure plan could help rebuild Texas highways and ports and push broadband into rural parts of the state, where up to 31 percent of residents do not have access to high-speed internet.

It could help Texas weatherize the grid in a way that wouldn’t stick consumers with the bill as well as guard the Gulf Coast against hurricanes and address racial disparities that have made Latino and Black communities particularly vulnerable to natural disasters.

The infrastructure pitch is the president’s latest attempt to offer up money for things Republican leaders in Texas have been looking for funds to cover, as well as some that state lawmakers have been reluctant to take on.

Houston Chronicle:

While President Joe Biden moves to expand the use of renewable energy nationwide, the Texas Legislature is doing the opposite, adding fees on solar and wind electricity production in the state in hopes of boosting fossil fuels.

Among the reforms of the state’s electric grid following last month’s deadly winter storms, Republicans in the Texas Senate have included new fees aimed at solar and wind companies that Democrats warn would damage the state’s standing as a national leader on renewable energy production, particularly wind power.

State Sen. Charles Schwertner, R-Georgetown, said while wind and solar have expanded in Texas, those are “unreliable” sources of energy because they cannot be called up at a moment’s notice during an emergency like the freeze in February.

Here, a reminder that the Texas Blackouts were overwhelmingly the product of failed gas, coal, and nuclear units.

Below – Texas fat cats will once again benefit from a socialist bailout.

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SNL: The Storm is Here

April 4, 2021

Not. novel to see an EV aimed at rich people. Tesla’s got that.
But the tone of this ad is toward rich, middle American, Middle aged guys.

OK and some rich Chinese guys too.

Following the work of FracTrackers as part of a new project.

The “orphaned” frack well opening above is one of hundreds of thousands around the country, as poorly capitalized wildcat fracking operations go bankrupt and disappear without properly closing their well pads.

The infrastructure plan currently proposed has funding to hire Oil/gas workers, thousands of whom are now idle, to use their skills closing off these toxic, methane leaking hazards. We should do it.