About Steve Hanley

Steve Hanley writes about the interface between technology and sustainability from his home in Rhode Island. You can follow him on Google + and on Twitter.

Author Archives: Steve Hanley

US Automakers Fighting Themselves & America — Stupid & Selfish? Or Are We Missing Something?

March 22nd, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it, the old expression goes. After dropping their drawers and bending way over in supplication to the new president and his designated EPA wrecker Scott Pruitt, US automakers cheered when the putative president announced last week in Michigan that he is ordering a CAFE review for the standards due to take effect in 2025 — the same standards the Obama administration did its best to set in stone just before leaving office

Chevy Bolt Pricing Changes With The Wind

March 22nd, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

The Chevy Bolt is now available in 7 states. If you want one, it may pay big dividends to shop around. In a pattern that is typical for clueless franchise dealers, some are offering steep discounts on the cars while others are tacking on equally steep dealer markups

The Largest Solar Farm In Alabama Is Now Online

March 19th, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

The River Bend solar farm in Alabama is now online and contributing about 75 megawatts of electricity to the TVA power grid in seven southern states. Every year, it will keep 100,000 tons of carbon out of the skies over the state.

Northvolt Will Build A $4 Billion Battery Manufacturing Facility In Scandinavia

March 18th, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

Two former Tesla executives are planning to construct a large lithium-ion battery manufacturing facility in Scandinavia, either in Sweden or Finland. Peter Carlsson was in charge of Tesla's supply chain operations and is now CEO of Northvolt. He is joined by another former Tesla executive, Paolo Cerruti, in the new venture

Fossil Fuel Industry Pays For Climate Change Studies By Academia

March 18th, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

An article written for The Guardian by Benjamin Franta and Geoffrey Supran accuses many of America's top universities of being little more than shills for fossil fuel companies when it comes to studies about climate change. They say that energy companies have ripped a page directly out of the tobacco industry playbook. The strategy calls for flooding academia with so much money to fund energy and climate change research that the universities have lost all semblance of impartiality and are simply reporting results pleasing to their industry paymasters

Amazon Jumps Into Solar … Big League

March 6th, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

In its annual ranking of world businesses based on their environmental policies, Greenpeace gave Amazon a so-so rating. Greenpeace said Amazon lags behind Apple, Facebook, and Google in terms of its renewable energy promises and projects. Not happy about being slapped around in public, Amazon has decided to ramp up its commitment to rooftop solar at its more than 50 worldwide operations centers

“EPA vs California” — Coming To A Theater Near You, Co-Starring Don “The Con” Trump, Evil Scott Pruitt, CARB, & CAFE

March 6th, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

An epic battle is brewing between the EPA and CARB. Back in 2009, the US auto industry was on the ropes. GM in particular was facing bankruptcy and Chrysler stood on the brink of going out of business altogether. Then Uncle Sugar swooped in with offers of bailouts and loan guarantees. The car companies all stood up like eager Cocker Spaniels and said, "Yes, please. We would love some of those treats you have there." The feds said there was a catch, though. "To get the goodies, you must first agree to a new CAFE standard of 54.5 mpg by the year 2025."

Battery Legend Goodenough Now Betting On Solid-State Batteries

March 6th, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

The story of the lithium-ion battery cannot be told without talking about John Goodenough. He is a scientist, researcher, and tinkerer now working at the University of Texas, where he says he has invented a solid-state battery that charges quickly, works well at low temperatures, and, best of all, doesn't explode or burst into flames at inopportune moments as happened with the Samsung Note 7 recently

Plug-In Hybrid Electric Pickup Trucks From XL Hybrids Coming In 4th Quarter

March 6th, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

XL Hybrids is the leading supplier of connected fleet electrification solutions for commercial and municipal fleets. Utility companies NV Energy and DTE Energy will be among the first fleet operators to put pickup trucks with XLP plug-in hybrid systems into service. The system delivers a 50% increase in fuel economy while reducing carbon dioxide emissions significantly

Georgia Power’s “Simple Solar” Offers Solar Electricity At 1¢/kWh Premium

March 2nd, 2017 | by Steve Hanley

Georgia Power is rolling out a new voluntary solar energy program known as Simple Solar for customers who want to support solar energy development but do not want to (or can't) install a rooftop solar system on their homes. Signing up is simple. Just go to GeorgiaPower.com/SimpleSolar, fill in some basic account information, and click the right button. You're done. Participants agree to pay 1¢ per kilowatt-hour over and above the standard rate for electricity

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