In this edition of the clean transport and energy news roundup, we have info about the inevitable emerge of EVs and autonomous technology, Smart EV models, the world’s first passenger train powered by hydrogen, the right-hand-drive Chevy Bolt, Brooklyn’s largest solar church, Tesla-branded MDMA, new solar price lows, coal to community solar, and more.
[CleanTechnica isn’t the only Important Media site to cover clean energy & transport news, and if you’re looking for more stories on electric mobility, bicycles, solar and wind energy, and other related issues, we’ve got them at sites such as Solar Love, CleanTechies, Planetsave, Bikocity, Gas2, and EV Obsession. We also host a large cleantech group on LinkedIn, called CleanTechies Around The World.]
Autonomous driving technologies and EV technologies will “inevitably merge.“
Every 2017 model Smart car will have an electric drive option:
The electric cars will be outfitted with an all new Smart Electric Drive system, built by Mercedes-Benz in partnership with Renault-Nissan. Its specifications make it seem like an ideal choice for most urban commuters. It has a Euro-cycle range of 99 miles (more like 75 miles in EPA testing). It uses a 17.6 kWH battery that can be recharged in just 2.5 hours using standard household current.
New aerial video shows Tesla’s Fremont manufacturing facility.
Germany will have the world’s first hydrogen passenger train:
Last week at the InnoTrans trade show in Berlin, French train manufacturer Alstom unveiled the first ever passenger train powered completely by hydrogen. Alstom has been working on the technology for the train for the past two years and says it will go into service in Lower Saxony in December of 2017.
Tesla MDMA. Ludicrous, or just insane?
What’s the real way that you tell when something has hit the mainstream? Is it when there are “recreational” drugs named/branded after you? Going by that metric, I guess that Tesla has now finally hit the mainstream — there are apparently now “Tesla-branded” MDMA pills circulating on the club scene in parts of Europe.
Utah looks to add more fast chargers and offer EV incentives.
Italian electric motorcycle manufacturer Energica is pulling a Tesla:
It is working to make charging stations available for its customers along the back roads that motorcycle riders prefer. The plan is to eliminate range anxiety for Energica riders. In partnership with utility companies and established charging networks, Energica is proposing to have a network of charging stations available in Italy and California starting in 2017.
Owner’s comparison: Tesla Model S P90D “blows away” Mercedes S65:
“As an owner of 3 Mercedes AMG models previously, I have to say my wife’s new P90D is simply the most amazing car I’ve ever driven. The Model S in noise vibration and harshness is quieter, smoother, and a much more refined ride than even a bi-turbo v12 $200,000 S class.“
ChargePoint adds Waitlist feature to its EV charging system.
Long term review of a 2012 Tesla Model S P85:
“Our car is my wife’s daily driver, shuttling 3 kids plus car pool using the rear facing jump seats. To say the car has been utterly life-changing is an understatement. Why? Never having to think about fueling, and almost never having to think about car headaches, oil changes, filters, hoses, belts. The convenience…the convenience. We still have one ICE for a gear hauler and the difference is almost like bad nostalgia.”
GM says it prefers not to make a right-hand-drive Chevy Bolt “yet.“
Denmark will help Indonesia develop wind resources:
Denmark and Indonesia have signed an agreement to promote and expand renewable energy infrastructure in the south-east Asian country. According to media reports, the two countries signed an agreement to set up a 60 MW wind energy project in the South Sulawesi province; the project will be the first wind energy project in the province.
Sitting on an 11-acre sun-drenched campus, the Christian Cultural Center is hoping to make a big impact as the biggest solar church in Brooklyn.
Panasonic increases ownership of PV company:
Panasonic of North America has increased its ownership stake in Coronal Group, leading to the formation of a new business entity known as Coronal Energy Powered By Panasonic. Coronal is a global company that supplies long term photovoltaic power solutions to industry and commercial customers.
The price of solar hit a new low in Abu Dhabi.
200 MW of ‘Urban Solar Farms’ will be developed in South Africa by SolarReserve:
The grant will support development of up to 200 MW of solar farms ranging in size from 5 to 30 MW. The projects will be privately owned and operated and will provide power to end users either directly or through wheeling arrangements with municipal distribution companies.
Despite current low oil prices, Kazakhstan plans to aggressively invest in renewable energy in the next decade.
Drones and robots help optimize solar farms:
Drones and robots are being used more regularly to help build and maintain solar installations. SunPower is one of the leaders in using new this new technology. It is about to begin construction of its new “Oasis” power plants in North America and China. These massive projects utilized drones to fly over proposed sites to gather data. That information was then fed into computers that use cutting edge software to evaluate thousands of designs and make recommends for the best options to pursue. That allowed project managers to easily compare potential sites. then customize configurations in order to make the best use of the available space.
Madhya Pradesh targets 2.2 GW of rooftop solar by 2022.
Chinese solar project will be world’s largest:
China’s largest private investor group, China Minsheng New Energy Investment Co., is developing a 2 GW solar farm in the Ningxia region which will be made up of some 6 million solar panels.
India auctions 450 MW solar capacity under capital cost support scheme.
NYC targets 100 MWh of electricity storage, 1 GW solar capacity:
New York City mayor Bill de Blasio has issued aggressive targets for New York City electricity storage and solar capacity, totaling 100 MWh of storage by 2020 and 1 GW of solar capacity by 2030.
A tender for 1 GW of capacity in Inner Mongolia shows China’s lowest ever bids for solar electricity.
Southern Illinois community solar farm will retrain unemployed coal workers:
700 Illinois coal industry workers lost their jobs in 2015, according to a company press release announcing the new project. Underemployed coal sector workers will be recruited for the project through local job placement agencies, advertising and industry outreach.
Orient Green Power eyes 1 GW of wind capacity in 3-4 years.
Don't want to miss a cleantech story? Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!
Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.