New Video: Solar Shines in the Heartland

July 19, 2018

I’ll be giving some presentations in coming weeks devoted entirely to newest developments in renewable energy.

While a lot of readers of this blog may be well briefed on where renewables are, it’s astounding how little this story has percolated down to the general population.

In particular, folks don’t understand that this is no longer a California thing – it’s the most economical path, or will be soon, across a broad swath of America and the world.

Below, major Michigan Utility planner discusses a recent shift in priorities – from fossil dependence, to a future of efficiency, a little wind, and a lot of solar energy.



4 Responses to “New Video: Solar Shines in the Heartland”

  1. Abel Adamski Says:

    From Downunder
    Note all the different technologies and applications

    Life after coal: the South Australian city leading the way

    It was a coal town, predicted to be wiped out by the closure of two ageing power plants. Now Port Augusta has 13 renewable projects in train

    In mid 2016, this region was on the brink, hit by the closure and near collapse of coal and steel plants. Now it’s on the cusp of a wave of construction that investors and community leaders say should place the region at the vanguard of green innovation – not just in Australia but globally. There has been an explosion in investment, with $5bn spread over the next five years. There are 13 projects in various stages of development, with more than 3,000 construction and 200 ongoing jobs. The economy of this once-deflated region has been transformed and those who live here are starting to feel hopeful again.
    The Port Augusta mayor, Sam Johnson, a 32-year-old former Liberal member, is continually surprised at how resistant some are to the idea that the energy environment has changed. “You might choose to ignore what’s happening here now because we’re out of sight, out of mind, but the reality is that what’s happening here is going to be happening on the eastern seaboard in the next 10 years,” he says.
    Two years on, the Port Augusta city council lists 13 projects at varying stages of development. And Whyalla has unearthed a potential saviour in British billionaire industrialist Sanjeev Gupta, who not only bought the steelworks but promised to expand it while also spending what will likely end up being $1.5bn in solar, hydro and batteries to make it viable.

    Gupta says the logic behind his investment in solar and storage is simple: it’s now cheaper than coal.

    Whyalla seems to have fewer issues in the wake of Gupta’s arrival in July 2017. Seeing a business opportunity that governments and publicly listed companies did not, he promised to initially spend $1bn to double the steel mill’s production and convert it to a “green steel” model he has applied in other countries. This includes using more recycled steel and investing heavily in clean energy close to the plant. He is spending $700m building two farms of solar panels, a cogeneration plant to convert the waste gases from steel production into electricity, the country’s largest lithium-ion battery and up to three pumped hydro plants in disused mining pits in the Middlebank Ranges. He says more will follow.

    Both Gupta and Johnson say the message for the rest of the country is: embrace change.

    Gupta says: “Be braver. Be more entrepreneurial. Take risks … It is very difficult to change things in Australia. Everyone is too stuck in their ways.”

    Johnson says: “You can resist change as much as you like, but the reality is, if you’re in a community that has a coal-fired power station, its days are numbered. The market is dictating that change whether we like it or not.

    “My advice is: learn from the Port Augusta experience. I wish the federal government would.”

    • Abel Adamski Says:

      Note in Australia the Liberal Party is the Conservatives and rapidly going the way of the GOP under the guidance of dear Rupert and Co

      So Johnson the ex Liberal MP (elected member of parliament) has made a massive turnaround

    • Abel Adamski Says:

      Gupta is also planning to build EV’s in South Australia

  2. […] New Video: Solar Shines in the Heartland […]

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