USA Fully Electric Car Sales Up 47% In 2017 says CleanTechnica

Sept 9 by Zachary Shahan

The US electric car market has continued to grow at a rapid pace in the past year — led by California’s particularly strong electric car market, of course. From January through August, sales of 8 fully electric cars* grew 47% in the country. Sales of 6 plug-in hybrid cars were up 30%. Overall, that meant sales of these 14 plug-in car were up 40%.

August 2017 vs August 2016 was less dramatic but still a period of strong growth. Fully electric car sales were up 19%. Plug-in hybrid sales were up 4%. Overall, that meant a 13% increase in plug-in car sales.If the Tesla estimates** are to be believed, the Tesla Model S was far ahead in the #1 spot, the Chevy Bolt held tight at #2, the Toyota Prius Prime rose to #3, the Tesla Model X dropped to #4, and the Chevy Volt and Nissan LEAF retained their places at #5 and #6, respectively. Ah, gone are the days of the neverending LEAF vs Volt battle at the top of the charts (which was a super tight competition for years).


If you look at the January through August stats (which are educated estimates** but certainly not exact), the Model S is crushing it (despite its high price tag). That hints at how extremely competitive the car is in its niche segment. The Volt has a slight lead over the Model X, which has an even slighter lead over the Toyota Prius Prime. The Chevy Bolt has a gap to cover to catch up with any of those models, but now that sales are picking up and availability is nationwide, it has potential to climb up the ranking and perhaps even land on the podium by the end of the year.

Bmw i3
BMW i3
Chevy Bolt
Chevy Bolt
Prius Prime and Nissan Leaf
185th Tesla Model S ever sold
185th Tesla Model S ever sold
Tesla Model X
Tesla Model X
We can surely expect electric car sales to keep increasing as Tesla Model 3 production ramps up, the next-generation Nissan LEAF arrives on dealer lots, and overall EV awareness rises. I would be surprised if our report one year from now doesn’t show a more dramatic electric car sales increase of 82% at this point in time.

Dandelion Announces its First Installer Partner in Aztech Geothermal

Aztech to Install Indoor Portion of all Dandelion 2017 Installations 
Whoop! Whoop!! 

More great news from my sponsors Dandelion Energy aka Dandelion, a geothermal startup that recently graduated X, the research and development lab at Google’s parent company (I just love that), announces the selection of it’s first installation partner, Aztech Geothermal. The companies will complete all of Dandelion’s 2017 installations. The best part folks is they are all over the internet and a leading leading geothermal installer in the Hudson Valley to Upstate NY.    Dandelion is making geothermal heating and cooling affordable by introducing a number of process and technology innovations, including:

a) analytics-based marketing

b) fixed system pricing

c) a low monthly payment option and

d) an innovative drilling method. Dandelion’s business model is based on “taking care of everything,” including system design, and installation of home geothermal heating and cooling systems.


Another cool part of their agreement is that the indoor portion of the install is gonna get subcontracted to regional installers helping regional companies grow their business. Aztech Geothermal will be Dandelion’s first installer for its initial regions of the Capital Region and Hudson Valley.

Geothermal cooling with DandelionDandelion energy geothermal heating

“Aztech has installed geothermal for hundreds of homeowners in the area, many of which we’ve spoken to and who couldn’t be happier about their installations,” says James Quazi, CTO of Dandelion. “We’re thrilled to have them as our first installation partner.”

“The introduction of Dandelion will be a real boost for our business and the whole industry,” said John Ciovacco, President of Aztech Geothermal, “Their marketing capabilities, innovative business model and technology innovations will make the best heating and cooling system also the most affordable for homeowners. We are thrilled to be selected as the first regional installation partner.”

Under the partnership, Aztech Geothermal will be responsible for all home inspections, system designs and installation of the geothermal heat pumps to homeowners with ductwork.

Sources: Dandelion Energy Inc. http://www.dandelionenergy.com and Aztech Geothermal www.aztechgeo.com

Renewables on the grid: Putting the negative-price myth to bed

Three years ago, the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) rebutted arguments that occurrences of negative prices at nuclear plants in Illinois were frequently caused by wind energy. That “compelling” data led FERC Commissioner John Norris, who had previously discussed his concerns about negative prices, to affirm that “the focus on negative prices is a distraction.”
More recently, we have documented that many instances of negative prices are caused by conventional power plants.

AWEA has now made our prior analysis far more comprehensive by examining full-year 2016 price data for all retiring power plants in the main wholesale electricity markets that have a large amount of wind generation: PJM, MISO, SPP, and ERCOT.

AWEA has now made our prior analysis far more comprehensive by examining full-year 2016 price data for all retiring power plants in the main wholesale electricity markets that have a large amount of wind generation: PJM, MISO, SPP, and ERCOT.
The results, which we are releasing today for the first time, confirm that any instances of renewable policies like the Production Tax Credit (PTC) and state renewable standard credits being factored into market prices have a trivial impact on retiring power plants.

Across more than 1.8 million data points, which cover all 2016 pricing intervals in the day-ahead electricity market for all retiring power plants in those regions, only 55 instances of negative prices were found that could have been set by a wind project receiving the PTC. The analysis includes market price data for all power plants that have retired since 2012 or have announced plans to retire.

Our analysis focused on the day-ahead electricity market (the results bolded below), as that is where nuclear and coal generators sell most if not all of their generation. However, the results show that wind plants almost never set prices for an additional 2.4 million data points in the real-time electricity market as well. For more background on electricity markets and how prices are set, see the last section of this post.

In PJM and MISO, which account for a large share of all power plants in wholesale markets that are retiring nationwide, only 0.003 percent of day-ahead market prices at retiring power plants were in a range that could be set by a wind project receiving the PTC, as shown on the left side of the table. Occurrences of negative prices that could be wind-related were even less frequent in SPP, at 0.0017 percent of day-ahead market price intervals. Those occurrences were slightly more common at retiring plants in ERCOT, at 0.06 percent of price intervals, but it should be noted that there is only one retiring coal power plant in ERCOT.

To underscore the trivial impact of the PTC in setting market prices, the right side of the table shows how prices would change if wind projects receiving the PTC no longer received the credit. In PJM and MISO, conservatively assuming that all negative prices in that range were set by wind projects receiving the PTC, Day-Ahead Market prices at retiring power plants would increase by an average of $0.0007, or 1/13th of a penny per megawatt hour (MWh), if operating wind projects no longer received the PTC. Retiring power plants in SPP saw an even smaller impact at 1/25th of a penny, while the one retiring coal power plant in ERCOT saw an impact of around one penny per MWh.

It is important to clarify that the PTC does directly reduce consumer electricity costs outside of the electricity market. The PTC and other incentives allow wind projects to offer lower long-term contract prices to customers and the utilities who serve them, which translates into lower electric bills for consumers on a 1:1 basis.

However, those contract payments are outside of the wholesale electricity market, so they are not directly factored into the wholesale electricity market prices received by other generators.

The facts about energy incentives

In reality, the wind PTC has been a remarkable success in driving the American innovation and efficiency that have driven a two-third reduction in the cost of wind energy since 2009. The more than 102,500 Americans working in the wind industry today are creating a new industry with a bright future, bringing tens of billions of dollars in investment to rural areas and tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs to America. Production-based incentives like the PTC have driven efficiency increases that make U.S. wind projects some of the most productive in the world.

In reality, the wind PTC has been a remarkable success in driving the American innovation and efficiency that have driven a two-third reduction in the cost of wind energy since 2009. The more than 102,500 Americans working in the wind industry today are creating a new industry with a bright future, bringing tens of billions of dollars in investment to rural areas and tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs to America. Production-based incentives like the PTC have driven efficiency increases that make U.S. wind projects some of the most productive in the world.    Regardless, Congress voted in December 2015 to phase down the wind PTC, and we are now in year three of that five-year phasedown period. Despite the recent focus on incentives for renewables, cumulatively wind energy has received only 3 percent of federal energy incentives, versus 86 percent for fossil and nuclear sources, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute and other experts. Given that the wind industry’s “tax reform” is already in place with the PTC phasedown legislation, we would welcome a comprehensive look at all forms of subsidies for all electricity sources.  Market dynamics are driving retirements  Market dynamics are benefiting consumers by driving retirement of older, less efficient resources in favor of more efficient resources. A wide range of experts agree that the primary factors driving power plant retirements and economic challenges for generators of all types are cheap natural gas and flat electricity demand.  The following map, compiled from Department of Energy data, shows that most retiring coal and nuclear plants are in regions that have little to no renewable generation, confirming that renewable energy or pro-renewable policies cannot be the primary factor driving those retirements.    Rather, the primary factor driving power plant retirements appears to be low-cost shale gas production undercutting relatively high-cost Appalachian and Illinois Basin coal in the Eastern U.S., as shown below. In the regions shaded red in the map, the fuel cost of producing electricity from natural gas is significantly
Regardless, Congress voted in December 2015 to phase down the wind PTC, and we are now in year three of that five-year phasedown period. Despite the recent focus on incentives for renewables, cumulatively wind energy has received only 3 percent of federal energy incentives, versus 86 percent for fossil and nuclear sources, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute and other experts. Given that the wind industry’s “tax reform” is already in place with the PTC phasedown legislation, we would welcome a comprehensive look at all forms of subsidies for all electricity sources.

Market dynamics are driving retirements

Market dynamics are benefiting consumers by driving retirement of older, less efficient resources in favor of more efficient resources. A wide range of experts agree that the primary factors driving power plant retirements and economic challenges for generators of all types are cheap natural gas and flat electricity demand.

The following map, compiled from Department of Energy data, shows that most retiring coal and nuclear plants are in regions that have little to no renewable generation, confirming that renewable energy or pro-renewable policies cannot be the primary factor driving those retirements.

Rather, the primary factor driving power plant retirements appears to be low-cost shale gas production undercutting relatively high-cost Appalachian and Illinois Basin coal in the Eastern U.S., as shown below. In the regions shaded red in the map, the fuel cost of producing electricity from natural gas is significantly lower than the fuel cost of coal power plants, explaining why utilities in those regions are moving from coal to natural gas generation.

For the entire story on the AWEA blog, MICHAEL GOGGIN, JULY 18, 2017

Elon Musk Tells Governors About Solar Power plus US Gigafactories

Speaking to the National Governors Association summer conference in Rhode Island last week, Elon Musk gave the state solons their money’s worth. He told them that it would be possible to supply every electron needed to keep America humming by covering just 100 square miles with solar panels.

“If you wanted to power the entire U.S. with solar panels, it would take a fairly small corner of Nevada or Texas or Utah. You only need about 100 miles by 100 miles of solar panels to power the entire United States.”

July 19th, 2017 by Steve Hanley   Speaking to the National Governors Association summer conference in Rhode Island last week, Elon Musk gave the state solons their money’s worth. He told them that it would be possible to supply every electron needed to keep America humming by covering just 100 square miles with solar panels.  “If you wanted to power the entire U.S. with solar panels, it would take a fairly small corner of Nevada or Texas or Utah. You only need about 100 miles by 100 miles of solar panels to power the entire United States.”
Of course, some grid storage capability would need to be included. Musk has an answer for that, too. “The batteries you need to store the energy, to make sure you have 24/7 power, is 1 mile by 1 mile. One square mile. That’s it.”
For the entire story from CleanTechnica on July 19th, 2017 by Steve Hanley 

JAGUAR ELECTRIFIES WITH I-PACE ELECTRIC CAR

– The I-PACE Electric Vehicle accelerates to 60 mph in around 4 seconds, and features a 90kWh battery with an estimated range of 220 miles (EPA cycle)(1)
– Driver-focused all-wheel-drive performance from twin-electric motors generating 516-lb ft of torque and 400hp(1)

– To be one of the first owners go to jaguarusa.com and click the ‘I want one’ button

This Jaguar I-PACE will be on the road in 2018. Customers can register now at jaguarusa.com to be one of the first I-PACE owners.
Jaguar’s engineering and design teams have torn up the rule book to create a bespoke electric architecture, matched with dramatic design. The result is a no-compromise smart, five seat sports car and a performance SUV in one.

Ian Callum, Director of Design, said: “The I-PACE Concept represents the next generation of electric vehicle design. It’s a dramatic, future-facing cab-forward design with a beautiful interior – the product of authentic Jaguar DNA, electric technology and contemporary craftsmanship.”

Dr Wolfgang Ziebart, Technical Design Director, Jaguar Land Rover, said: “This is an uncompromised electric vehicle designed from a clean sheet of paper: we’ve developed a new architecture and selected only the best technology available. The I-PACE Concept fully exploits the potential EVs can offer in space utilization, driving pleasure and performance.”

The electric motors and 90kWh lithium-ion battery pack were designed in-house by Jaguar Land Rover to give the best possible performance and range for most daily commutes.

For rapid charging, using a public 50kW DC charging network, a full charge will take just over two hours. Enough to deliver an estimated 220 miles range (measured on the US EPA test cycle)(1).

The I-PACE transforms the electric driving experience and offers the driver-focused performance and response Jaguar is renowned for. To help deliver this, the I-PACE has electric motors on the front and rear axles. Their combined output is 400hp and 516-lb ft. of torque(1) – the same torque rating as the F-TYPE SVR.

Ian Callum said: “The interior of the I-PACE is finished with beautiful, premium materials and an unwavering attention to detail. Throughout the interior you will discover a host of beautiful details to surprise and delight. From the expansive panoramic glass roof to the sporting, beautifully finished seats, every feature bears the hallmark of British craftsmanship.

“And there is digital craftsmanship too, with two touch screens serving up information when and where you need it, limiting distraction and improving the driving experience”

The I-PACE Electric Vehicle accelerates to 60 mph in around 4 seconds, and features a 90kWh battery with an estimated range of 220 miles (EPA cycle)(1) – Driver-focused all-wheel-drive performance from twin-electric motors generating 516-lb ft of torque and 400hp(1)
“Jaguar, by embracing cutting-edge technology in this way, has created an experience rich and rewarding for its consumers. It has undoubtedly redefined the future of how automotive brands introduce their new vehicles to customers.”.

All pricing and figures for acceleration, power, speed, range and charging are Manufacturer’s estimates based on best information available at time of publication. Jaguar I-PACE production vehicles will be tested and certified prior to release, with official figures available prior to any customer order.

Sources: Jaguar http://www.jaguarusa.com and Jaguar Land Rover