Amazon’s Epic EV Order

September 26, 2019

When we have a fleet made up of EVs, powered by wind and solar, there will be much less motivation for going to War in the Middle East.
Just sayin’.

Detroit News:

Plymouth-based electric vehicle startup company Rivian Automotive has an agreement to fill the largest order of fully electric vehicles in automotive history.

The startup is to build 100,000 electric vans for e-commerce giant Inc. over the next decade, Rivian said Thursday. The first batch of vans is expected to hit U.S. roadways by 2021, with 10,000 on the road by late 2022, said Rivian spokeswoman Amy Mast. All 100,000 are to be operating in Amazon’s fleet by 2030.

That’s a big step for a company that last fall didn’t even have signs identifying its Plymouth headquarters when it surprised the Los Angeles Auto Show with sleek prototypes of the electric seven-passenger RS1 SUV and four-passenger RT1 pickup with a claimed 400-mile-plus range. And it could prove a smarter way to do business than Tesla Inc., the company to which Rivian will inevitably be compared.

“It’s a real vote of confidence from Amazon,” said Sam Abuelsamid, principal analyst at Ann Arbor-based Navigant Research, who focuses on mobility. “Buying early vehicles would be an indicator for other companies who are considering electrifying their fleet that Rivian is a company they need to take a look at if they’re going to do this. Amazon doesn’t make decisions like this lightly.”

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Mick Mulvaney is acting White House Chief of Staff, and instrumental in withholding congressionally authorized and much needed military aid from the Ukraine (and lying about the reason why)– part of what’s been revealed in this week’s startling dump of phone transcripts from the Trump administration.

To help place climate denial in correct context with treason, I’ll just leave this here.

Thunberg owns Trump

September 24, 2019

She is a jedi at this.


Thunberg now nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

For Climate Deniers, Greta Thunberg’s righteous fury is like sunlight to Vampires.
They’ve lost it following today’s landmark UN speech.
This dynamic is not an insignificant part of the swing to impeahment now happening.


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Pretty good vid, lots of figures and animations, interviews with key players including Dan Kammen.
Look for the assessment of battery storage toward the end.

NASA Goddard:

Arctic sea ice likely reached its 2019 minimum extent of 1.60 million square miles (4.15 million square kilometers) on Sept. 18, tied for second lowest summertime extent in the satellite record, according to NASA and the National Snow and Ice Data Center. The Arctic sea ice cap is an expanse of frozen seawater floating on top of the Arctic Ocean and neighboring seas. Every year, it expands and thickens during the fall and winter and grows smaller and thinner during the spring and summer.

But in the past decades, increasing temperatures have caused marked decreases in the Arctic sea ice extents in all seasons, with particularly rapid reductions in the minimum end-of-summer ice extent. The shrinking of the Arctic sea ice cover can ultimately affect local ecosystems, global weather patterns, and the circulation of the oceans.

Greta Thunberg’s “How Dare You?” speech will rank in history with M.L. King’s ” I Have a Dream”.

Moore’s Law has famously defined the rapid drop in price and increase in power of computer processors. For context, make sure to click on and watch the animation above.

The corollary for the solar industry is Swanson’s Law.

Yahoo Finance:

Moore’s Law might be dead, but Swanson’s Law remains alive and well.
Swanson’s Law is the observation that solar PV panels tend to become 20 percent cheaper for every doubling of cumulative shipped volume. It’s the solar industry’s equivalent of Moore’s Law, which predicts the growing computing power of processors. But as the semiconductor industry has discovered, the observation that processing power increases exponentially at a two-year or so cadence has hit a physical limit.
Fortunately, Swanson’s Law is yet to come up against such a brick wall, and solar energy costs have continued to come down precipitously for decades–without exception. And now the renewable energy industry is about to cross a major milestone that will truly set it on the path towards becoming the world’s predominant energy source.

According to a report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) cited by Reuters, beginning in 2020, electricity generated by solar PV and onshore wind is set to become consistently cheaper than the most cost-effective fossil fuel alternative, without subsidies.
In essence, more than 80 percent of solar PV and 75 percent of onshore wind power deployments to be commissioned next year will be cheaper than the cheapest new oil, natural gas, or coal-fired sources as per the report.

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Well above average sci-fi movie with good performances and haunting score.

True Grit in Space.