Accelerating the Charge ⚡️

Category: Climate (Page 1 of 3)

Consumer Reports asks how much winter weather affects an EVs driving range

EV Winter Driving

Consumer Reports »

Running the cabin heater, seat heaters, defroster, and other accessories that combat the cold weather inside the car all sap range. For cold temperatures, what we have found is that 20 degrees Fahrenheit and colder is when the range really drops.

We’ve done some testing on how the cold weather affects range, and one of the biggest takeaways is that a buyer needs to consider how many miles they drive in a typical day and double that number to determine the driving range that’s right for their needs. If you drive 50 miles a day, you’ll want an EV that has at least a 100-mile range. The good news is that many electric cars are getting 200-plus miles of battery range nowadays, and that number is generally improving from model year to model year. (Where this is a greater concern is with an older EV that may have lost some range due to the ravages of time.)

A key reason to choose added range is not only the energy demands but also the unpredictability of weather. You don’t want the stress of being caught in a winter storm not knowing how long the drive will take.

To reduce the impact of cold, park the car in a garage where it can remain on a charger. “It takes less energy to maintain a temperature than to raise it, so this can make a significant difference in range,” says Sam Abuelsamid, senior analyst at the automotive research and consulting firm Navigant.

Most large U.S. cities have yet to institute strong policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transportation

Most large U.S. cities have yet to institute strong policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from transportation, and they are not on track to meet their climate goals for the sector—or have yet to set any—according to the 2021 City Clean Energy Scorecard. The report, released Wednesday by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), ranks 100 major U.S. cities on efforts including reducing energy waste in homes and buildings and moving toward a cleaner power grid—and doing so equitably. It identifies the leading cities, the most improved, and those with ample room for progress, citing opportunities for each to advance.

San Francisco took top honors for the first time in this sixth edition of the Scorecard, followed by Seattle (#2), Washington, DC (#3), Minneapolis (#4), and Boston and New York (tied for #5). San Francisco launched a new program that provides free home energy-saving kits to residents in areas that are disproportionately burdened by multiple sources of pollution and are economically disadvantaged. The city also updated its energy code for new residential and commercial buildings with requirements that will reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, and it was the top scorer on transportation policies.

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“It is important that we stop selling fossil cars.” » Electrify Everything » Oslo, Norway plans to slash carbon emissions by 95% compared to 2009 levels in the next 8 years

The city of Oslo is taking this initiative and moving ahead of the national government.

CleanTecnica »

Einar Wilhelmsen is a member of the Green Party and the finance minister for Oslo. At the Nordic EV conference recently, he told Elbil, the Norwegian electric car association, “It is important that we stop selling fossil cars. That process must be turned off completely. It is clear that we will struggle to get rid of every fossil car sold now, so this should simply not happen anymore.”

The City Council plans to create a zero emissions zone in the center of the city where only electric vehicles will be permitted, a policy initiative that will encourage people to buy electric cars. In coming years, that zone will be expanded to cover more of the city. The city does not intend to ban the sale of gasoline- and diesel-powered cars and trucks. It believes its zero emissions zones will accomplish that goal without resorting to mandates.

World’s first autonomous electric container ship launches in Oslo, Norway to replace 40K diesel truck trips per year

Andy Corbley / Good News Network »

Built by Yara to transport their mineral fertilizer stocks between the towns of Porsgrunn and Brevik, a trip which normally requires 40,000 trips by diesel truck per year, the Yara Birkeland will save around 1,000 tons of CO2 annually.

On November 19th, Yara Birkeland departed for a crewed maiden voyage—which included Norway’s prime minister—on a short 43-mile trip across the fjord from Horton to Oslo.

“We have been looking forward to this day for a long time,” stated Svein Tore Holsether, CEO of Yara. “This is an excellent example of green transition in practice, and we hope this ship will be the start of a new type of emission-free container ships. There are a lot of places in the world with congested roads that will benefit from a high-tech solution like this.”

Onboard the 262-foot (80 meter) vessel is a 6.8 megawatt-hours battery pack that can generate 17 mph (28 kph). It can carry 3,200 tons of fertilizer, and should begin commercial operations next year while it carries out lengthy certification for its autonomous navigation technology.

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Volkswagen is investing in technology firms in the field of energy transformation

Reuters »

The carmaker, which has committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2050, said on Wednesday it had entered a strategic partnership with EIT InnoEnergy and will become a shareholder in the EU-backed venture.

The move is in line with other steps by Volkswagen, which in September unveiled plans to set up its own 300 million euro ($348 million) venture capital fund to invest in decarbonisation projects and start-ups in the field.

“The idea is simply … to use InnoEnergy as an additional way to find interesting enterprises and support them in scaling up their business models,” said Jens Wiese, Volkswagen’s head of group M&A, investment advisory and partnerships.

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Are green(er) jet fuels ready for takeoff?

Wired »

Each engine burned about 600 gallons during the flight, according to United, and created about the same carbon emissions (12,660 pounds). But because the sustainable fuel is made from plant-based sources instead of petroleum, and because plants consume carbon dioxide during photosynthesis, it has a carbon footprint that’s about 70 percent smaller.

“What we were trying to do is demonstrate that the aircraft can operate in the same capacity with sustainable fuel as with blended fuel,” says Lauren Riley, United’s managing director for global environmental affairs and sustainability. “It did. This is a true step in the path of decarbonization.”

Imagine sustainable aviation fuel, or SAF, as part of a big plant-fuel-engine carbon recycling loop, rather than a one-way ticket that sends carbon from a subterranean oil patch directly to the atmosphere. In fact, federal government and industry estimates hold that using SAF can reduce lifetime carbon emissions from 50 to 80 percent depending on the feedstock and type of energy used during manufacturing. The Houston test flight was the first time a commercial aircraft ran at least one engine on 100 percent SAF, which is currently limited to a 50/50 blend on passenger flights.

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Also » United Airlines flies first commercial jet on sustainable fuel from IAH » Huston Chronicle

Fleetzero is attempting to decarbonize the cargo shipping industry with battery-powered ships

Marine shipping contributes 1 billion metric tons of carbon emissions each year.

Susan Caminiti, CNBC »

Start-up Fleetzero is aiming to provide solutions for both of these problems. Co-founders Steven Henderson and Michael Carter — graduates of the United States Merchant Marine Academy — are building battery-electric cargo ships that will not only help decarbonize the industry but could also ease supply chain bottlenecks by utilizing more of the available ports around the world.

And if that sounds a bit far-fetched consider that Elon Musk said way back in 2017: “Everything will go fully electric, apart from (ironically) rockets. Ships are the next easiest to solve after cars.”

In 2018, the International Maritime Organization, a regulatory arm of the U.N., set an initial goal of cutting carbon emissions from international shipping by at least 50% by 2050 compared with 2008. The problem with reaching that goal, according to Clean Air Task Force research, is that international shipping fleets would need to transition to net-zero carbon fuels.

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