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Problems with Metro Transit Electric Buses Show the Technology Isn’t Ready for Primetime

Last week the Star Tribune ran an article entitled "Metro Transit Temporarily Pulls Electric Buses from C Line Because of Problems with Chargers," stating the eight electric buses on the newly-formed C Line would be taken out of service until defects with the charging mechanisms could be fixed. Diesel-powered buses will continue service on the line. According to the article: "The 60-foot electric buses, manufactured by New Flyer of America in St. Cloud, were supposed to charge overnight and then stop for a quick 12-minute charge at the Brooklyn Center Transit Center while in operation. But issues surfaced with the electric fleet’s...

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Problems with Metro Transit Electric Buses Show the Technology Isn’t Ready for Primetime

Last week the Star Tribune ran an article entitled "Metro Transit Temporarily Pulls Electric Buses from C Line Because of Problems with Chargers," stating the eight electric buses on the newly-formed C Line would be taken out of service until defects with the charging mechanisms could be fixed. Diesel-powered buses will continue service on the line. According to the article: "The 60-foot electric buses, manufactured by New Flyer of America in St. Cloud, were supposed to charge overnight and then stop for a quick 12-minute charge at the Brooklyn Center Transit Center while in operation. But issues surfaced with the electric fleet’s...

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As $7,500 Federal Subsidies Expire, Electric Vehicles Are About to Get More Expensive

You may not have known this, but the federal government has been subsidizing electric vehicles (EV's) to the tune of a $7,500 tax credit for every electric vehicle sold. In fact, the subsidy is a major reason why we're starting to see more Tesla's tooling around the Twin Cities, but there's a catch: the subsidy begins to disappear after a manufacturer has sold 200,000 units, and Tesla has hit this threshold, meaning the growth of Elon's EV's could slow moving forward. The phase out of the tax credits comes at a bad time for Tesla, after the EV automaker announced it would...

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Washington Post Poll Shows Most People Unwilling to Pay $2 Per Month Tax to Fight Climate Change

While the climate strike and Greta Thunberg may have the limelight this week, the unwavering truth of climate and energy policy remains: people are unwilling to pay the costs associated with reducing carbon dioxide emissions. A recent poll from the Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation shows that support for reducing carbon dioxide emissions withers under the slightest bit of scrutiny. The poll shows people favor taxing the wealthy to pay for increasing electricity costs, which is pretty much par for the course on every issue, and raising taxes on energy, even if that leads to higher prices. However, when people are asked to...

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Wind Produced 4 Percent Less Electricity Through June 2019 than Through June 2018, Despite More Turbines Online

Wind generation through June of 2019 was actually 4 percent lower than through June of 2018, according to Energy Information Administration data. This decline in output comes even though there are more turbines in operation today than there were at this time in 2018. The year-over-year decline in 2019, to date, is due to lower wind production in January, February, March, and June, compared to 2018. The decline is likely due to a variety of factors including weather, turbine degradation, and possibly curtailment of wind facilities when the grid was constrained. Weather is the most likely culprit for lower wind output year-to-date...

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Sunday Funnies: Cobalt Mining in the Congo for Renewable Energy Sources

There's more than a twinge of hypocrisy among liberal environmentalists that want to stop responsible mining for copper, nickel, and cobalt in Minnesota at all costs, yet demand that the state transition to 100 percent carbon free electricity without nuclear or large hydro. Wind and solar power use enormous amounts of copper and nickel and Minnesota has the largest undeveloped reserves of these metals in the world. It's our responsibility to mine them responsibly, not to export environmental damage, and our conscience, to developing countries.  ...

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Renewables Threaten German Economy & Energy Supply, McKinsey Warns In New Report

Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan and other lawmakers recently traveled to Germany to supposedly learn about Germany's "Energy Transition," and bring home useful lessons that can be gleaned for Minnesota's energy future. From what I can tell, they group didn't get their money's worth, because almost all of the media covering Germany's attempt to close their nuclear plants and rely on wind and solar are saying that the policy is a disaster. It's not just people who work at think tanks, either. In fact, consulting giant Wood McKinsey wrote that Germany's energy policy poses a signficatn threat to the nation's economy and energy...

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Talk About Bad Timing: McKnight Foundation Announces Big Green Giveaway One Day Before Jamie Long Scandal Breaks

Talk about bad timing if you're a green-energy profiteer. Just one day before the scandal that led to the resignation of Representative Jamie Long (DFL) from his hand-crafted job at the University of Minnesota's Institute on Energy made headlines, the McKnight Foundation announced they would be doubling down (the Stribs words, not mine) on the grants to green groups, increasing their contributions "from $15 million to $30 million over the next couple of years," according to the Star Tribune. Apparently, that also meant a $50,000 grant for Representative Long's ethically dubious position at the University. The McKnight Foundation's involvement in funding a position...

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