The Energy Gang

By Wood Mackenzie

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Subscribers: 649
Reviews: 4

drd
 Aug 15, 2020
Some of the smartest and best informed people in clean energy. No shouting at each other, no fact-free opinionaters.

Matt
 Apr 19, 2020
This is like a free graduate class in energy and climate issues (but way more entertaining)

Spencer
 Dec 21, 2019
Great listen for anyone interested in clean energy. Easily approachable for this technical professional outside the industry.


 Mar 27, 2019
a must listen for anyone interested in energy

Description

Weekly discussions about the latest trends in energy, cleantech, renewables, and the environment from Wood Mackenzie.


Episode Date
Can Aviation Be Made Sustainable?
00:53:20

It’s the first Energy Gang of the year. Ed Crooks is joined by Emily Chasan of Generate Capital and Amy Harder, formerly of the Wall Street Journal and Axios, now at Breakthrough Energy, which is the net-zero initiative founded by Bill Gates - find out more here: Cipher: Overview | LinkedIn - who joins the gang for the first time to kick off 2022 with a bang.

With air travel over the holiday season bouncing back – despite the Omicron variant – what are the best prospects for taking the emissions out of aviation? In the US, in mid-December, more than two million people per day were passing through the TSA’s checkpoints. That is still significantly below pre-pandemic levels, but it is roughly double the numbers in the same period of 2020. Even with the pandemic still raging, people want to fly. That is a real problem for getting to net zero. Aviation emissions are small, accounting for a little under 2% of total global greenhouse gas emissions, but their share is rising. Sustainable aviation fuel and electric planes, are they are viable solution yet?

Also, VC and private equity investment into clean tech is booming. About 60 billion dollars was invested in by venture capital and private equity into climate tech in the first half of 2021, according to a recent survey from professional services firm PwC. That’s almost triple the 28 billion that was invested in the first half of 2020.About 14% of all VC financing is now going to climate tech. Is investment going to the right technologies?

And finally, one of the ideas that is being developed to make sure capital flows into the right activities is EU’s Green Taxonomy. It’s a list of environmentally sustainable economic activities, to give companies, investors and policymakers definitions for which economic activities can be treated as environmentally sustainable, and which can’t. The gang examine the plans; is it a sensible strategy? Is the EU setting a path others might follow?

There has been a huge amount of discussion in the past couple of weeks about the Netflix film Don’t Look Up: a rare example of Hollywood giving a big-budget big-star treatment to a movie about climate change. It deserves some scrutiny, so to wrap up the show Ed, Emily and Amy give their opinions on the film and argue its effectiveness at raising awareness for climate change.


The Energy Gang is brought to you by EPC Power.

EPC Power manufactures self-developed energy storage smart inverters made in their American factories with gigawatt level capacity. Visit www.epcpower.com/energygang to learn more about their utility scale and C&I product lines and schedule a call to learn how they can help you power your energy storage projects!

 EPC Power – Excellence in Power Conversion.      

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Jan 14, 2022
What the US can Learn from Australia with Renewables [Special Content]
00:36:15

Achieving net zero emissions requires collaboration from a multitude of government organizations and businesses.

For a country the size of Australia, 24% of electricity coming from renewables is a huge accomplishment. But it does not come easy. Australia has two large interconnected energy networks, the National Electricity Market along the East Coast, with demand of 30-35 GW, and the Western Australia Electricity Market, with demand between 2-3 GW. Both networks are receiving a huge update of distributed solar which means the amount of energy generated by renewables is constantly increasing.

Hitachi Energy, a longtime partner of The Energy Gang has played an integral role in helping Australia to achieve this, and on today’s episode, Ed Crooks is joined by two key representatives from Hitachi Energy, to discuss their work in Australia and examine some of the lessons that other countries can learn from Australia’s experience.

Juergen Zimmerman is Business Development and Technology Manager for Hitachi Energy, based in Darwin, Australia.

John Glassmire is Senior Advisor for Grid Edge Solutions, also at Hitachi Energy and based in Seattle.

This episode was produced in collaboration with Hitachi Energy. Hitachi is helping to accelerate the energy transition by developing digital and energy platforms, helping customers to overcome the complexity and capacity challenges required to transition towards a carbon-neutral energy system.

Get access to the on-demand webinars on Grid Edge Solutions here: https://bit.ly/3zPBh8a


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Dec 31, 2021
The Gang Wraps Up 2021
00:55:47

It’s a special edition of the Energy Gang this week, with the last episode of 2021 recorded for Wood Mackenzie’s Grid Edge Innovation series.

Ed is joined by Emily Chasan from Generate Capital and Amy Myers-Jaffe from Tufts University, to look at how smart devices are changing energy retailing, and the role of SPACs in financing clean energy deployment.

The gang wraps up 2021 with their top 5 stories in energy for the year, looking back on the success of investment company Engine No.1, developments in energy storage, green stimulus in Europe and more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Bloom Energy. Bloom’s onsite energy platform provides unparalleled control for those looking to secure clean, reliable 24/7 power that scales to meet critical business needs. It eliminates outage and price risk while accelerating us towards a zero carbon future. Visit Bloom Energy to learn how to take charge today.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Hitachi Energy. What does your energy future look like? Look to Hitachi Energy for the advanced energy technologies needed to deliver real outcomes — unlocking new revenue streams, maximizing renewable integration, and lowering carbon emissions. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Dec 17, 2021
A Breakthrough In The Energy Game
00:47:34

Zero-emission, low-cost electricity, delivered to the grid from natural-gas fuelled technology. A wright-brothers first flight kind of breakthrough in energy?

The gang discuss the possibilities and scalability of NET Powers Technology, a Texas-based energy company who’ve made this exact claim.

Ed is joined as usual by Melissa Lott from Columbia University, and Emily Chasan from Generate Capital.

The other big story of the week was the collapse of British energy provider Bulb, the 6th largest provider in the country and an issue that has impacted some 2 million customers. Could the same thing happen in the US? Within those talks, the pros and cons of carbon capture technology are explored, and if the Biden administration made the right decision to release 50 million barrels of petroleum from the SPR to help ease the heightened holiday energy demand.

The gang leaves you with some holiday-season free electrons, including a cracking joke from Ed, and find out why climate change is affecting Canada’s maple syrup production.


The Energy Gang is brought to you by Bloom Energy. Bloom’s onsite energy platform provides unparalleled control for those looking to secure clean, reliable 24/7 power that scales to meet critical business needs. It eliminates outage and price risk while accelerating us towards a zero carbon future. Visit Bloom Energy to learn how to take charge today.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Hitachi Energy. What does your energy future look like? Look to Hitachi Energy for the advanced energy technologies needed to deliver real outcomes — unlocking new revenue streams, maximizing renewable integration, and lowering carbon emissions. Learn more.


See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Dec 03, 2021
Innovation, Agreements and Earthshots
00:57:25

The COP26 circus has left town. Across 2 weeks of talks in Glasgow, what were the successes, and what were the failures? With current commitments putting the world on track to 2.4°C of warming, the cost of inaction on climate and health will vastly outweigh the costs of acting now, so which countries are snapping into action?

Host Ed Crooks is joined by regular Melissa Lott, Director of Research at the Centre on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University, and Amy Myers-Jaffe, Managing Director of the Climate Policy Lab, at the Fletcher School at Tufts University, to give the final verdict.

Also in the show, the gang looks at innovations in technology in carbon capture and storage; President Biden’s infrastructure bill proposes big commitments on CCS, what do these look like? Plus, nuclear and hydrogen technologies, which could play a huge role in the energy transition, go under the microscope.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Bloom Energy. Bloom’s onsite energy platform provides unparalleled control for those looking to secure clean, reliable 24/7 power that scales to meet critical business needs. It eliminates outage and price risk while accelerating us towards a zero carbon future. Visit Bloom Energy to learn how to take charge today.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Hitachi Energy. What does your energy future look like? Look to Hitachi Energy for the advanced energy technologies needed to deliver real outcomes — unlocking new revenue streams, maximizing renewable integration, and lowering carbon emissions. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 19, 2021
What Does The World Need From COP26?
00:49:35

COP26 is under way in Glasgow. It has been billed as the “last best hope for the world to get its act together” on climate change, but what is the real significance of the talks?

Host Ed Crooks is joined by new regular co-host of the Energy Gang Melissa Lott, Director of Research at the Centre on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University, to discuss the key issues and outcomes of the conference. Also joining for this episode is Emily Chasan, Director of Communications at Generate Capital, and former Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg journalist.

What needs to happen at COP26 for it to be counted as a success? The UN Environment Program noted in its new Emissions Gap 2021 report last week: “As a group, G20 members are not on track to achieve either their original or new 2030 pledges. Ten G20 members are on track to achieve their previous NDCs, while seven are off track.”

In this episode, the gang will explore the pledges made at previous conferences, as well as the new ones, and discuss whether they can lead to meaningful change in the global energy system.

In the second half of the show: soaring prices for gas, coal and electricity since the summer have raised questions about energy access, poverty and international equity: how can the world address these issues at COP26 and beyond?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Bloom Energy. Bloom’s onsite energy platform provides unparalleled control for those looking to secure clean, reliable 24/7 power that scales to meet critical business needs. It eliminates outage and price risk while accelerating us towards a zero carbon future. Visit Bloom Energy to learn how to take charge today.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Hitachi Energy. What does your energy future look like? Look to Hitachi Energy for the advanced energy technologies needed to deliver real outcomes — unlocking new revenue streams, maximizing renewable integration, and lowering carbon emissions. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 08, 2021
The Energy Gang's Next Chapter
00:38:38

Some news for this podcast: Ed Crooks, VP of the Americas for Wood Mackenzie, will be taking over the show as our new host.

Co-hosts Katherine Hamilton and Stephen Lacey will be moving on. 

Wood Mackenzie will be producing the podcast from now on, bringing on a range of new voices to join the gang.

We discuss the transition in the first half of the episode. 

Later in the show, Katherine, Stephen and Ed explore the range of expectations for global climate talks in Glasgow. 

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Oct 29, 2021
Mr. Shah Goes to Washington
01:04:13

The U.S. Department of Energy is crucial for funding, researching, and testing emerging energy tech.

Now, in the Biden era, the agency is orienting itself toward deployment. How difficult is that transition?

Our former co-host Jigar Shah joins Stephen, Katherine, and Ed to discuss his experience running the Energy Department’s loan programs office.

In March, Jigar left his position at Generate Capital (and this podcast) to head into government service and run the loan programs office. Jigar has $40 billion in authority to back a wide range of climate technologies -- and he’s been working on the first round of investments with those dollars.

In the second half of the show: a surprising twist in the global clean-energy transition. How much trouble will energy price inflation cause around the world?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Bloom Energy. Bloom’s onsite energy platform provides unparalleled control for those looking to secure clean, reliable 24/7 power that scales to meet critical business needs. It eliminates outage and price risk while accelerating us towards a zero carbon future. Visit Bloom Energy to learn how to take charge today.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Hitachi Energy. What does your energy future look like? Look to Hitachi Energy for the advanced energy technologies needed to deliver real outcomes — unlocking new revenue streams, maximizing renewable integration, and lowering carbon emissions. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 21, 2021
No Peak in Sight for Emissions
00:46:59

EIA and IEA are out with projections for emissions and fossil fuel consumption. And they don’t look good. 

On our current policy trajectory, there is no peak in sight, according to EIA By 2050, we will likely see a 50% increase in energy consumption. And even though renewables will be the fastest-growing new source of energy, hydrocarbon liquid fuels will meet the majority of demand.

That means emissions could rise through 2050, absent massive changes to policy.

In July, the International Energy Agency issued a similar analysis showing that carbon emissions will hit record levels in the coming years. And that spending packages around the world — even at historic levels — are still not enough. 

How do we make sense of this sobering analysis?

Plus, Wood Mackenzie is out with a new analysis of global energy storage trends, showing that storage deployments are set to triple this year. Most of that growth is coming from America and China, which account for 70% of installations. What are the applications, technologies and markets that will dominate this growth?

Finally, Europe is in a crisis headed into winter. Natural gas is the second-most confused fuel in Europe — and prices are 6 times higher than they were in the spring.

A confluence of factors — rapidly rising demand all at once, lower production than expected from Russia, low storage in Europe, lower-than-expected hydro and wind production — are contributing to the problem. 

What could alleviate the crisis? And does this put strain on Europe’s climate ambitions headed into COP26?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Bloom Energy. Bloom’s onsite energy platform provides unparalleled control for those looking to secure clean, reliable 24/7 power that scales to meet critical business needs. It eliminates outage and price risk while accelerating us towards a zero carbon future. Visit Bloom Energy to learn how to take charge today.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Hitachi Energy. What does your energy future look like? Look to Hitachi Energy for the advanced energy technologies needed to deliver real outcomes — unlocking new revenue streams, maximizing renewable integration, and lowering carbon emissions. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 14, 2021
Where Green Hydrogen Is Headed [Special Content]
00:26:58

Suddenly everyone is talking about green hydrogen. 

From South Africa to the United Arab Emirates. From China to Utah. Governments and developers are eyeing hydrogen as a decarbonization tool. 

But the rush is also raising lots of questions: Where will hydrogen be most useful? How do you create a supply chain to support it? And how can we ensure it has climate integrity?

For answers, we turned to two experts who are obsessing over the future of hydrogen: Janice Lin and Stephen Lamm.

Janice Lin is the founder and CEO of Strategen. And she’s president of the green hydrogen coalition. 

Stephen Lamm is the director of sustainability at Bloom Energy, a company deploying zero-carbon solutions like green hydrogen.

With so much renewed attention on the resource, we brought Janice and Stephen together for a discussion about where green hydrogen tech, markets, and applications are headed.

This episode was produced in collaboration with Bloom Energy. Bloom’s onsite energy platform provides unparalleled control for those looking to secure clean, reliable 24/7 power that scales to meet critical business needs. It eliminates outage and price risk while accelerating us towards a zero carbon future. Visit Bloom Energy to learn how to take charge today.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 14, 2021
What Do Transit Systems Look Like After Covid?
00:58:55

Ride sharing has swept transportation systems over the last decade -- bringing convenience, but also congestion, inequities, and political fights.

Now a new category of transportation networking is emerging: TransitTech.

It makes up a class of companies that are using tech to help maximize public transit systems. So what does TransitTech look like post-pandemic?

Tiffany Chu joins Katherine and Stephen this week to discuss the path forward for transit. Tiffany is the co-founder and CEO of Remix, which was recently acquired by Via for $100 million.

We’ll also dig into a new study from Carnegie Mellon University that shows Uber and Lyft are increasing external societal and environmental costs by up to 35% compared to personal car driving. 

We’ll wrap up with a discussion about how transportation will play into upcoming legislation on climate and infrastructure. 

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Bloom Energy. Bloom’s onsite energy platform provides unparalleled control for those looking to secure clean, reliable 24/7 power that scales to meet critical business needs. It eliminates outage and price risk while accelerating us towards a zero carbon future. Visit Bloom Energy to learn how to take charge today.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Hitachi ABB Power Grids. What does your energy future look like? Look to Hitachi ABB Power Grids for the advanced energy technologies needed to deliver real outcomes — unlocking new revenue streams, maximizing renewable integration, and lowering carbon emissions. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 09, 2021
The Hidden Science Behind Decarbonizing Buildings
00:57:02

All around us, hidden inside our buildings, are a series of choices and tradeoffs -- choices with direct impacts on our health, our money, and our energy use. 

Our buildings are wasteful and are filled with a lot of  “embodied” carbon. As a result, buildings directly and indirectly account for 40 percent of global emissions. 

How do we make those choices with better building science?

And how do we use that science to design carbon out of our buildings?

This week, Katherine and Stephen are joined by Christine Williamson, the creator of Building Science Fight Club. She is a building scientist who teaches architects how to think more intelligently about designing residential and commercial buildings to improve comfort and energy performance, while minimizing system failures.

She also has an unconventional take on the green building space — arguing that many of the “feel good” approaches are not necessarily the most functional. 

Christy has spent her career inside homes and commercial buildings using “building forensics” to identify problems with design and operation. So what does an on-the-ground practitioner think about what’s most effective for improving the performance of buildings, and what’s not?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 01, 2021
Will Direct-Air Carbon Capture Be Viable?
00:54:08

Carbon capture has long been criticized as too nascent, too expensive, and too distracting. Is that changing?

This month, the Swiss company Climeworks officially launched a direct-air capture plant in Iceland, called Orca. 

The company has already signed deals with SwissRe, Bill Gates, Stripe, and Shopify to sell them credits from the plant. But the tech is still pretty expensive and relatively small scale. 

Climeworks wants to build megaton-scale plants by the end of the decade. Lots of other plants are in the works. So what does this commercial launch signal for the carbon-capture industry? 

Plus, new research shows just how drastically we need to slash fossil fuels to limit dangerous warming. 

And, California tries to fix the busted recycling system with a “truth in advertising” law aimed at plastics companies.

The Energy Gang is a Wood Mackenzie podcast.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Sep 21, 2021
Power After Carbon
00:54:32

The electric grid is a central pillar of a zero-carbon economy. But in an era of unrelenting weather extremes, it’s also one of the most fragile.

This week: what does power after carbon look like?

Katherine and Stephen are joined by Dr. Peter Fox-Penner, author of a new book called, “Power After Carbon.”

Peter is the founder of the Boston University Institute of Sustainable Energy. And he’s a partner and chief strategy officer at the VC firm Energy Impact Partners. 

At the turn of the last decade, Peter wrote a book called “Smart Power” that looked at the new pressures that utilities were facing around climate policy, emerging distributed energy, and digitization. We’ll look at what’s changed the most over the last decade.

Plus, we’ll talk about why Entergy’s resistance to distributed energy in Louisiana created vulnerabilities after Hurricane Ida.

The Energy Gang is a Wood Mackenzie podcast.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Sep 14, 2021
Why This IPCC Climate Report Is Different
01:10:16

The world’s most scrutinized and peer-reviewed document is out: the IPCC report on climate change. 

Thousands of scientists have spent decades pouring over every measurement and research report known. The findings are clearer than ever: It is “virtually certain” that the increases in extreme temperatures and droughts are caused by human activity. 

The economic and human toll from climate change is here. So how is this report different from previous IPCC reports?

Plus, is the push for hydrogen a real pathway, or a clever way to lock in more emissions? We’ll look at the debate over “blue” hydrogen emissions.

And, how far have the politics of climate really shifted in Washington? Will a change in tone mean a boost in action?

Katherine Hamilton, Ed Crooks, and Stephen Lacey are this week’s co-hosts. 

The Energy Gang is a Wood Mackenzie podcast.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 27, 2021
Form Energy's Iron-Air Battery for Multi-Day Storage
00:50:58

This episode originally aired on The Interchange.

Back in 2016, Mateo Jaramillo left Tesla, where he was leading the stationary energy storage business, and started looking for a new challenge to tackle. He took on long-duration energy storage -- not long duration like 8 hours or 12 hours, but days or weeks or more. In 2017 he came on the show to talk about it

He formed a company, now Form Energy, that has been toiling on this problem in stealth mode. Apart from saying they were building a "metal air" battery, his team held the technology close to the vest.

That is, until last week. 

The company announced a $200M Series D financing led by ArcelorMittal, the world's largest steelmaker, and in the process finally made public the technology, which is an iron air chemistry. 

Full disclosure: Shayle led Energy Impact Partners’ investment in Form.

Shayle and Mateo discuss the technology itself and the counterintuitive economics that Mateo believes will make it work. They also examine how it beat out the alternatives and how it might complement more efficient, but more expensive lithium-ion. It turns out financial modeling was far more important than spec sheets in understanding the tradeoffs.

They tackle the critical question: Where exactly are the profitable applications of this technology before we hit very high 80% renewables? 

They also talk about the semantics of long-duration storage vs. multi-day storage, why Mateo hates holy grails, and potential partnerships with tofu companies.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 18, 2021
As Profits Rise, Oil Majors Face New Pressures
01:00:14

We started the Covid pandemic at negative oil prices. Today, benchmark prices are above $70. And top oil companies are reporting billions of dollars in profits.

And now there is more scrutiny than ever on how they’re going to spend that money.

Activist shareholders are starting to get climate champions on oil major board seats -- most notably, climate tech investor and former wind executive Andy Karsner on Exxon Mobil’s board.

A dutch court is now forcing Shell to reduce the emissions from its products by 45%, after a successful lawsuit from environmental groups. Oil executives now have their lawyers on speed dial.

And big asset managers, like BlackRock, which lend to many of the world’s energy giants, are scrutinizing their climate plans. 

So what does it all amount to as oil markets rebound?

Ed Crooks, the vice chair of Americas at Wood Mackenzie, joins us this week to discuss.

Plus, we’ll talk about a new report card on America’s infrastructure. It’s a slight improvement, but the grade is still pretty awful. 

And, carbon offsets are going up in flames. Literally. What comes next for forestry offsets?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 10, 2021
A New Inflection Point for Clean Energy [Special Content]
00:15:44

We're at a new phase of the clean energy transition. Extreme heat, drought and floods are increasing in frequency. Public attention on clean energy is stronger than ever. The Biden Administration is putting zero-carbon energy at the core of its policies.

And there's another powerful force: making sure the energy transition is as racially and economically just as possible.

Anton Cohen is a partner at CohnReznick LLP, and national director of the firm’s Renewable Energy Industry Practice. He's been advising companies across a wide range of industries: tech, manufacturing, public tax credits, and energy. 

Today, he focuses exclusively on renewables: “All we do is renewables. Live, eat, sleep, breathe renewables.”

The large investors and energy users that Anton advises are feeling the urgency.

“I think it's the corporates who are pushing hard. People know what direction we're heading in. It's just a matter of how quickly we get there with the energy transition,” says Anton.

Amidst all of this change in the corporate world, we have an ongoing pandemic, a lumpy economic recovery, massive cybersecurity breaches, and an infrastructure bill under consideration that could transform the clean energy economy.

Anton is watching all of it. So we caught up with him for a take on how all these factors are influencing each other. 

This episode was produced in collaboration with the international advisory, tax and accounting firm CohnReznick LLP. Learn more about how clean energy experts and advisors like Anton, can help your organization grow.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 10, 2021
What Emerging Climate Tech Sectors Are Ready for Growth?
00:54:04

After 30 years of R&D and commercial proof, hundreds of billions in institutional dollars are pouring into now-conventional tech like wind, solar and batteries.  

But there’s a whole class of technologies that are ready to scale. And investors who are increasingly ready to back them.

As we heard in our previous show, there was a record $17 billion in venture capital going into climate tech in 2020. 

With all this money dropping into the space, where can it have the highest impact? What are the areas where we have commercial viability, but still need significant breakthroughs?

Our guest co-host this week is Nneka Uzoh Kibuule, a senior vice president at Aligned Climate Capital. She joins Stephen and Katherine to talk about the sectors where she sees the most promise.

She'll also talk about the launch of GreenTech Noir, an organization that helps black professionals grow their career connections across clean energy, smart cities, transportation, infrastructure, environmental justice, and more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 03, 2021
A New Era for Climate-Focused Venture Capital
00:54:55

During the height of the pandemic in 2020, venture capital poured into climate technologies at record levels. It was a happy surprise amidst a collapsing economy and years of investment stagnation. 

Venture investments in climate tech topped $17 billion in 2020 across more than 1,000 deals. Five years ago, it had fallen to $5.2 billion — a 30 percent decrease from a previous peak in 2011.

Our guest co-host this week is Emily Kirsch, the founder and CEO of Powerhouse. She’s also the host of Watt It Takes, the entrepreneurship series about founders tackling climate change.

Suddenly, it’s cool to be putting your money into the sector again. And there’s something different about today’s rise in enthusiasm. The first wave was all about the “coolness” of cleantech — thin-film solar, electric sports cars, printable batteries. It was also about proving cost curves.

Kara Swisher put it bluntly in the NYT last year: the world’s first trillionaire will be a greentech entrepreneur.”

Today, there’s much more technological maturity — bigger scale, bigger and better data, and more resources to tap for startups.

There is also a deeper moral responsibility infused with investments. If you are running a major VC firm or a corporate venture arm, you are out of the loop if you don’t have a climate component of your portfolio. Andrew Beebe of Obvious Ventures argues we’ve entered the “climate decade” in VC.

This week: climate tech isn’t just having a moment. It’s having an age, a period, a generation. Why we are at the start of a climate tech era in venture capital.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

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Jul 21, 2021
The M&A Turf Battle Over Wind, Solar and Storage Projects [Special Content]
00:13:39

In March of 2020, Covid shut down economies, closed off supply chains, and sent unemployment to historic levels. No one knew what would come next for energy.

Oil prices went into negative territory. Industrial electricity use plummeted. Residential demand shot up. And there were big pipelines of renewable energy projects waiting to get built.

“I think we were all a little bit nervous about how COVID was going to affect all of the deal flow in the market,” says Britta von Oesen, a managing director at CohnReznick Capital.

Britta is the person at the table brokering tax structures and project sales that move money into renewable energy. So did Covid destroy her ability to get deals done?

“Honestly, it's gone a lot better than I would have expected,” she says. 

M&A activity increased. And as 2021 kicked off, the M&A deals only accelerated. Most of the top independent wind and solar developers have been scooped up by utilities, private equity firms, oil majors, or bigger corporates. And the ones that haven't been acquired may be soon. 

There is an intense turf battle over wind, solar and storage platforms in the US. So what is driving all this activity? 

In this episode, brought to you by CohnReznick Capital, we speak with Britta Von Oesen about who's doing the acquiring, who's doing the selling, and what it all means for the growth of U.S. clean energy.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 20, 2021
Extreme Weather Keeps Maxing Out the Grid
01:05:24

It’s been a very intense year for America’s power grid. Across the country, the electricity system just faced another stress-test as extreme heat taxed power plants and grid operators in the Pacific Northwest, Texas, and New York.

Since 2000, outages across the U.S. have increased by 67%. Is the power system ready for tomorrow’s extreme weather -- today?

Stephen and Katherine are joined by Dr. Melissa Lott, a senior research scholar and the director of research at the Center on Global Energy Policy.

Plus, we’ll discuss a secret recording of an Exxon lobbyist bragging about the company’s efforts to delay climate policy. What does it tell us about the oil industry’s grip in Washington?

We’ll finish with a look at a new report from Columbia University: can we use natural gas pipelines to accelerate the low-carbon transition?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow. As a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world, Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 154 gigawatts in total across the globe. Email them to learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by S&C Electric Company. Today, non-wires alternatives such as microgrids can provide more sustainable, resilient and economical ways to deliver reliable power. S&C helps utilities and commercial customers find the best solutions to meet their energy needs. Learn more.

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Jul 08, 2021
America's Transmission Challenge (Rebroadcast)
00:51:12

America is a place where if you can dream something — no matter how big or ambitious — you can do it. 

Unless you’re trying to string 700 miles of high-voltage transmission lines to bring wind power from Oklahoma to Tennessee. 

Our guest this week is Russell Gold, author of a new book about the saga that unfolded when wind energy pioneer Michael Skelly tried just that. 

The book, Superpower, is all about Skelly’s attempt to build one of the most ambitious energy infrastructure projects in recent history — and how he faced nearly every obstacle imaginable. What does Skelly’s journey tell us about America’s diminishing ability to do great things?

Russell Gold is a veteran newspaper reporter who was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for his reporting on the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. He wrote a book in 2014 on the rise of fracking, called The Boom. He’ll join us to talk about the reasons why Skelly’s transmission plan failed.

This is a rebroadcast of a 2019 episode.

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Jun 29, 2021
A New Podcast: 'The Big Switch'
00:38:04

This week, we are offering the first episode of a new podcast: The Big Switch.

It’s a five-part series about how to clean up the energy system -- told in a clear, understandable and fun way. 

The show is hosted by Dr. Melissa Lott, research director at Columbia University's Center on Global Energy Policy.

Stephen Lacey is the show's executive editor.

Listen to the first episode of The Big Switch right now -- and subscribe to the show on Apple, Spotify, and any other place you get podcasts.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jun 21, 2021
Tracking the Equity Outcome of Decarbonization
00:49:13

We can measure the energy transition in any number of ways. The hundreds of millions of solar panels and wind turbines installed. The gigatons of carbon reduced. Or the number of jobs created.

But how do we measure the equity outcome?

Our guest co-host, Dr. Destenie Nock, is focused on exactly this question. She is an assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. 

Dr. Nock is creating new models for energy-systems planning that factor in positive social objectives, not just cost or reliability metrics.

Any decarbonization strategy is a de facto justice/equity strategy, as frontline communities will see the most benefit. But how do we maximize the benefit? And how do different pathways determine the outcome for low-income citizens and people of color who are disproportionately impacted by pollution? We’ll dig in.

Plus, what is happening with the infrastructure bill? All of a sudden, negotiations are at an impasse. President Biden broke off talks with Republican Senate leadership after strong disagreements over climate spending.

Now progressives and climate groups are wondering: are we going to lose another historic climate bill? And if so, how long will it be until another chance emerges?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Aurora Solar. Aurora is offering all the presentations from its recent Empower Summit for free on its website. Go here to see conversations with people like Sunnova CEO John Berger and CALSSA Executive Director Bernadette Del Chiaro. 

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Enel X, a leader in energy storage, DER management software, and smart electric vehicle charging stations to increase project value. Learn what Enel X can do for your business

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Jun 16, 2021
Coal Is Uncompetitive. Why Do We Burn So Much?
00:58:46

America gets 20 percent of its electricity from coal. That’s a 50 percent drop since the peak in 2007. But if coal is becoming so economically uncompetitive, why does it still make up so much of our grid mix?

This week: Coal is no longer king. But it still has a lot of power across the land. How do we banish it for good?

Katherine and Stephen welcome Joe Daniel as a guest co-host this week. Joe is a senior energy analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

Joe joins us to talk about the problem of coal plant “self-scheduling,” which locks in operation of dirty power plants even when the economics don’t make sense.

We’ll also look at how we unburden ourselves from the long-term agreements these coal plants are under? One solution is to buy back debt through securitization — basically like refinancing a mortgage. How will it work?

Finally, we’ll discuss the numbers behind nationalizing the coal industry. Could we buy up the entire sector, shut it down, and then offer wages, healthcare, pensions, and job placement to displaced workers? It would only cost somewhere between $33 billion and $83 billion over 15 years, according to estimates from the Union of Concerned Scientists.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Aurora Solar. Join Aurora on June 8th and 9th for the second annual virtual summit. Hear from, and interact with, industry leaders, policy makers, sales experts, and more. Get your questions ready, and save your spot by registering now.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Enel X, a leader in energy storage, DER management software, and smart electric vehicle charging stations to increase project value. Learn what Enel X can do for your business

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Jun 11, 2021
A Wartime Plan for Electrifying America
01:06:28

What if someone told you that we have everything we need to decarbonize most of the economy? 

We would just need to start electrifying every new car, furnace, water heater, drier, and cookstove, and industrial process starting right now. And yeah, and put solar on every roof that can handle it.

This week: a wartime plan for winning the climate fight with clean electricity. What’ll it take? How possible is it?

Saul Griffith is our guest co-host. He’s the founder and chief scientist of Rewiring America. He’s also the author of the upcoming book “Electrify,” from MIT Press. 

If we are on a wartime footing for decarbonizing the economy, Saul could be considered a 5-star general of the “electrify everything” movement.

He founded or co-founded around a dozen companies and organizations. And he has a PhD from MIT in materials science and information theory.

Saul is now trying to marshal the world around his “a defensible and believable” pathway for decarbonizing America with clean electricity.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Aurora Solar. Join Aurora on June 8th and 9th for the second annual virtual summit. Hear from, and interact with, industry leaders, policy makers, sales experts, and more. Get your questions ready, and save your spot by registering now.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Enel X, a leader in energy storage, DER management software, and smart electric vehicle charging stations to increase project value. Learn what Enel X can do for your business

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May 23, 2021
What Are ‘Transformational’ Utilities Doing Right?
01:02:10

First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then they transform?

This week: a look at some positive trends guiding the utility sector. What are power providers that are leading the energy transition doing right?

We’re joined by Julia Hamm, the president and CEO of the Smart Electric Power Alliance.

We’re talking about SEPA’s 2021 utility transformation profile -- a survey and ranking system of over 130 electric utilities in the US.

There are thousands of power companies. That means different flavors of corporate goals, management styles, and approaches to building clean energy. Julia’s going to help us understand what they are.

Why is utility progress more like “change management” than traditional Silicon Valley-style disruption? 

Then: how utilities will benefit from Biden’s big infrastructure push.

Plus, the solar census: what will job growth look like in a post-pandemic world?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Aurora Solar. Join Aurora on June 8th and 9th for the second annual virtual summit. Hear from, and interact with, industry leaders, policy makers, sales experts, and more. Get your questions ready, and save your spot by registering now.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Enel X, a leader in energy storage, DER management software, and smart electric vehicle charging stations to increase project value. Learn what Enel X can do for your business

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 16, 2021
Is Offshore Wind *Finally* Coming to America?
00:56:53

The lack of progress on offshore wind in America is one of the most baffling and frustrating stories in energy. 

The technology and resource availability are tremendous. Europe has de-risked the technology and proven it can be deployed at scale, and at low cost, with minimal disruption. U.S. states are setting big targets. And at a national-scale, people want it.

And yet, we have not been able to get any meaningful amounts of offshore wind capacity in the water. 

That may be about to change. In late March, the Biden team said it plans to accelerate offshore wind development -- with a goal of getting 30 gigawatts of projects finished by 2030, and 110 gigawatts by 2050.

By comparison, we have 30 megawatts in the water now. And Europe currently has 25 gigawatts operational.

So what does the government need to do to finally make this industry a reality?

Energy futurist Ramez Naam is our guest co-host this week. 

We’ll also talk about Biden’s first 100 days in office. He marked the occasion with a speech to Congress that emphasized his “blue-collar blueprint to rebuild America.” H e’s drawing a very clear connection between taking action on climate change and building tons of jobs. 

So what has Biden accomplished so far that is meaningful? What is rhetorical and what is creating a clear pathway to real outcomes?

Finally, we’ll look at why the UN is shifting its focus to methane emissions

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Aurora Solar. Join Aurora on June 8th and 9th for the second annual virtual summit. Hear from, and interact with, industry leaders, policy makers, sales experts, and more. Get your questions ready, and save your spot by registering now.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 07, 2021
Banking Is the Pressure Point for Climate
01:05:33

In 2015, then-Secretary of State John Kerry called the Paris climate treaty a “tremendous victory.” In the years since, $3.8 trillion has flowed into fossil fuels globally.

Now Kerry and other White House officials are focusing on banks and insurers that are still offering a lifeline to new fossil fuel projects. Can they slow the flow of cash?

This week: why finance is the main pressure point for climate.

Today, all the major banks are collectively supporting hundreds of billions of dollars worth of renewables projects every year. 

But few are giving up on fossil fuels. One environmental campaigner put it this way: “the banks are gorging on doughnuts and then eating an apple afterwards.”

A new analysis from DeSmog finds that 77% of board directors at the top-7 US banks have ties to “climate-conflicted” groups.

Earlier this year, New York University released a study showing that only 7 percent of board members in the top 100 US companies -- which includes many banks -- had any climate expertise at all.

This week, Justin Guay joins Katherine and Stephen as a guest co-host. Justin is the director of global climate strategy at the Sunrise Project. He’s been following the flow of money into climate-conflicted projects for a decade.

Looking to grow your career in solar tech? Aurora Solar is the leader in solar design and sales software. Aurora is hiring across multiple roles including customer success, marketing, sales, operations, and more. See open roles and apply to join Aurora, voted one of the best places to work in 2021, at www.aurorasolar.com/energygang.

This podcast is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions around the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone — and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

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Apr 30, 2021
Is America Halfway to a Zero-Carbon Grid?
00:47:03

In 2005, it looked like heat-trapping gases from power plants were only going up.

That year, the EIA put out a projection: CO2 emissions from power plants would steadily rise every year, thanks to the incumbency of coal and gas.

Today, they’re half of what was projected. A new report from Lawrence Berkeley National Lab calls it “halfway to zero” -- meaning we are already halfway to a zero-carbon grid.

This week: why the path to net-zero may surprise us once again.

Then: America’s climate image on the world stage is in tatters. What will it take for the Biden team to stitch it back together before COP negotiations this fall?

Finally: a ton of specific policy ideas that can help us expand solar to the people who need it most.

BlocPower CEO Donnel Baird joins Katherine and Stephen as our guest co-host this week.

Looking to grow your career in solar tech? Aurora Solar is the leader in solar design and sales software. Aurora is hiring across multiple roles including customer success, marketing, sales, operations, and more. See open roles and apply to join Aurora, voted one of the best places to work in 2021, at www.aurorasolar.com/energygang.

This podcast is also brought to you by CPower. CPower’s latest book, "Demand-Side Energy Management in the Time of COVID," takes a peek into eight of the biggest commercial industries in North America and reveals key energy management strategies successful organizations executed during the wildest year of the young century. Download it here.

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Apr 22, 2021
Unlocking Home Electrification With Heat Pumps
00:57:26

Every few seconds, a new residential HVAC system or water heater is installed around America. Most of them are designed to burn oil and gas -- locking in 15-20 more years of carbon pollution.

So how do we electrify 100% of that new equipment rapidly?  This week: a wide-ranging conversation about how to unlock the residential market. 

Katherine and Stephen are joined by Nate Adams, the co-founder of HVAC 2.0. He’s called “the house whisperer” for a reason. They discuss the benefit of home electrification, the opportunity, and the market constraints.

Later in the show, a new trend in real estate: Redfin released a survey of prospective homebuyers, asking them about how they’d factor climate risk into their decisions. Half of them said that intensifying natural disasters influenced their decision to relocate. What are the consequences for the market?

Resources:

  • Grist: The Barriers to Home Electrification
  • Workshop: Nate Adams’ Electrify Everything Course
  • Redfin Survey: Climate Change Influencing American Home Buyers
  • Lisbeth Kaufman: Why I’m Buying a Climate Haven


Looking to grow your career in solar tech? Aurora Solar is the leader in solar design and sales software. Aurora is hiring across multiple roles including customer success, marketing, sales, operations, and more. See open roles and apply to join Aurora, voted one of the best places to work in 2021, at www.aurorasolar.com/energygang.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 15, 2021
Can California Move Fast Without Breaking Things?
00:58:38

California is the proving ground for every major change that President Biden wants to accelerate nationally: 100% carbon-free electricity, fossil fuel phaseouts, climate-resilient grid hardening. 

The state wants to make 100% of retail electricity sales carbon-free by 2045. To that, it’ll need to match its best year ever for renewable energy installations -- for 25 years more years in a row. It’ll amount to $4.5 billion in yearly spending.

California is moving fast. Is there such a thing as too fast? 

This week, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer Sammy Roth joins us to talk about California’s fast, sometimes-messy, and still-evolving energy transition. 

Plus, tensions over public lands. It’s going to take a lot of investment, difficult choices, and grit to hit California’s zero-carbon goals. It’s also going to take a lot of land.

That’s putting the Biden team in a dilemma: how to balance a historic build-out of wind and solar farms with protection of public lands? 

Plus, we look at the details of Biden’s “once in a generation” plan to reconstruct the economy one seawall, EV charging station, and transmission project at a time.

Resources:

  • Sammy Roth’s “Boiling Point” newsletter
  • Sammy’s article on the collision over renewables on public lands
  • Sammy’s article on California’s pathway forward to 100% clean power
  • E&E News: How Biden’s $2T infrastructure plan would overhaul the grid
  • NYT: Biden’s $2T plan to reshape the economy


Looking to grow your career in solar tech? Aurora Solar is the leader in solar design and sales software. Aurora is hiring across multiple roles including customer success, marketing, sales, operations, and more. See open roles and apply to join Aurora, voted one of the best places to work in 2021, at www.aurorasolar.com

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Apr 09, 2021
How Do We Decarbonize the Food System?
00:52:03

The systems that support growing, shipping and processing food make up one-third of heat trapping gases.

How can Agtech help us tackle this tangled and underserved sector? We’ll look at investment activity, technological solutions, and policy levers.

Then, we revisit long-duration storage. A net-zero grid will require new ways to store and discharge energy over long periods. How’s it shaping up?

Plus, is carbon pricing back on the table here in the US?

This week, Katherine and Stephen are joined by guest co-host Amy Duffuor, a principal at Prime Impact Fund. 

Resources:

  • Ag Funder: How to Unleash Agtech in the Fight Against Climate Change
  • Greentech Media: California Could Need 55 GW of Long-Duration Storage
  • Axios: Oil Industry Endorses a Carbon Price


Looking to grow your career in solar tech? Aurora Solar is the leader in solar design and sales software. Aurora is hiring across multiple roles including customer success, marketing, sales, operations, and more. See open roles and apply to join Aurora, voted one of the best places to work in 2021, at www.aurorasolar.com

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Apr 02, 2021
America’s Trillion-Dollar Climate Infrastructure Play
00:53:27

This week, the nuts and bolts of climate policy: infrastructure.

With a $2 trillion covid relief package under his belt, Biden looks to harness another $3 trillion on building clean energy, hardening the electric grid, installing electric car chargers, and updating roads and bridges.

We’ll game out what’s needed and what’s possible.

Then: is this the moment for the black climate agenda? And if so, what are the priorities?

Finally, how will pressure campaigns over new fossil fuel infrastructure play out in the next four years? And what lessons have we learned from previous fights over the last decade?

The gang this week: Katherine Hamilton and Stephen Lacey are joined by climate strategist Tamara Toles O’Laughlin.

Resources:

  • New York Times: Biden’s Biden’s Recovery Plan Bets Big on Clean Energy
  • E&E News: How the Infrastructure Bill Might Tackle Climate Change
  • Redfin Study: Redlined Communities Face Greater Flood Risk
  • CNN: A New Pipeline Battle Fires Up in Minnesota


This podcast is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions around the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone — and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

This podcast is also brought to you by CPower. CPower’s latest book, Demand-Side Energy Management in the Time of COVID, takes a peek into eight of the biggest commercial industries in North America and reveals key energy management strategies that successful organizations executed during the wildest year of the young century. Download it here.

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Mar 25, 2021
The Clash Over Gas Bans in Buildings
00:55:40

This week: natural gas bans are the newest flash point in the energy transition. What does it mean for the electrify-everything movement -- and the gas industry’s public relations battle?

Then: how do we build back better for everybody? We’ll look how Biden’s recent stimulus and climate agenda could mend America’s growing wealth and race divide.

Plus: it’s been a year since the start of the pandemic. What transformed, and what didn’t? What did we get right and wrong? We’ll revisit the last 12 months.

Katherine Hamilton and Stephen Lacey are joined by Donnel Baird, the CEO of Blocpower

Resources:


This podcast is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions around the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone — and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

This podcast is also brought to you by CPower. CPower’s latest book, Demand-Side Energy Management in the Time of COVID, takes a peek into eight of the biggest commercial industries in North America and reveals key energy management strategies that successful organizations executed during the wildest year of the young century. Download it here.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 18, 2021
Climate Tech Is Changing Fast
00:51:57

This week, we present a crossover episode of our sister podcast, The Interchange.

In this episode, host Shayle Kann talks with fellow venture capitalist Abe Yokell about the state of climate tech investing. It’s safe to say that this year has brought some of the biggest changes to the space we’ve ever seen. Shayle and Abe try to separate what’s real from what’s hype.

Thanks to everyone for their kind emails and social media reactions after Jigar's final episode.

The show goes on! We’re currently booking a diverse range of high-profile guests to join us each week. We think you're going to like what we have in store for you.

While you are waiting for new Energy Gang episodes, this is the perfect time to follow the The Interchange where ever you listen to podcasts.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 09, 2021
Jigar's Final Episode
00:42:25

Jigar Shah has been our co-host since 2013. But now he's moving on to new pastures.

Starting this this week, Jigar will be leading the Department of Energy's loan programs office -- running the government's strategy to finance the deployment of up-and-coming clean energy technologies.

In this episode, we reflect on Jigar's career and his role on the show. Plus, we'll learn more about his mission in the Biden Administration.

Read the announcement.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 03, 2021
Watt It Takes: Executive Producer Stephen Lacey
00:51:23

This week, we have a bonus episode of Watt It Takes featuring Stephen Lacey, our founding host and executive producer.

Back in December, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch interviewed Stephen for a holiday edition of Watt It Takes. They talked in front of an audience about his career in journalism, how the world of podcasting has evolved, and his entrepreneurial journey launching a production company. 

And great news! Watt It Takes is now a standalone series. You can subscribe on Apple, Spotify, Google Podcasts or anywhere you get your shows. We'll be featuring the top voices in climate tech throughout 2021.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 26, 2021
The Texas Grid Failure
01:02:42

Even for energy veterans, the depth of failures in Texas last week were breathtaking. 

As arctic air froze power plants, gas lines, and mechanical instruments, the grid was shut down -- leaving 4 million people without electricity, unknown millions without heat, and three times that many without water. 

Texas has been through freezes like this before in 2011, 2014 and 2018. Regulators were warned. So who is to blame for this historic catastrophe?

This week, we’ll talk about what happened in Texas -- reflecting on the responses and projecting the consequences for how we engineer the grid. 

Then: did the shale boom fail to create all those promised jobs? 

New research shows that the natural gas boom did not bring a massive employment wave to counties in the Marcellus and Utica shales. Wealth yes, but not so many jobs. 

  • Wall Street Journal: In Frigid Texas, Desperate Families Take Risks to Stay Warm
  • Associated Press: Texas governor’s biggest donors: Energy industry that failed
  • NBC: The GOP is rapidly becoming the blue-collar party. Here's what that means.
  • Inside Climate News: A Decade Into the Fracking Boom, Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia Haven’t Gained Much, a Study Says


Thanks to our sponsors:

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy. Wärtsilä is leading the energy transition with the Atlas of 100% Renewable Energy. Stick with us at the end of the show to hear how this tool is helping us understand how to best spend stimulus dollars on the clean-energy transition.

 This podcast is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions around the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone — and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

This podcast is also brought to you by CPower. CPower’s latest book, Demand-Side Energy Management in the Time of COVID, takes a peek into eight of the biggest commercial industries in North America and reveals key energy management strategies that successful organizations executed during the wildest year of the young century. Download it here.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 24, 2021
How a ‘Climate Emergency’ Could Harness Wartime Powers
00:57:16

This week: climate change is certainly the most urgent issue we face. But should it be formally declared an emergency? 

There’s a real conversation over the label in the US -- and it could have a very real impact on what the president can do.

This has been a growing priority for environmental groups. Grist reported that in December, more than 380 of them sent a letter to Joe Biden’s transition team, urging him to issue an executive order mobilizing the National Emergencies Act. 

And now, Rep. Earl Blumenauer and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in the House and Sen. Bernie Sanders in the Senate among others just introduced The National Climate Emergency Act of 2021, 

Then: what could be the counter-impact? Changes across the energy economy are set to accelerate. If we don’t do it correctly, are we facing a “Yellow Vest” protest movement like we saw recently in France?

And last: a new study shows that some cities are grossly under-reporting their carbon emissions. Do cities even have the resources to measure them properly?   

Resources:

  • Grist: AOC, Sanders, and Blumenauer press Biden to declare a ‘climate emergency’
  • Vice: AOC and Bernie Are Teaming Up to Get Biden to Declare Climate Change a National Emergency
  • Vox: “We risk a yellow vest movement”: Why the US clean energy transition must be equitable
  • New York Times: U.S. Cities Are Vastly Undercounting Emissions, Researchers Find

Thanks to our sponsors:

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy. Wärtsilä is leading the energy transition with the Atlas of 100% Renewable Energy. Stick with us at the end of the show to hear how this tool is helping us understand how to best spend stimulus dollars on the clean-energy transition.

 This podcast is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions around the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone — and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

This podcast is also brought to you by CPower. CPower’s latest book, "Demand-Side Energy Management in the Time of COVID," takes a peek into eight of the biggest commercial industries in North America and reveals key energy management strategies successful organizations executed during the wildest year of the young century. Download it here.

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Feb 12, 2021
The Dirty Secret Behind Utility Climate Goals
01:01:36

Net-zero pledges are becoming common for utilities. But a huge number of them are failing to decarbonize on any timeframe that truly matters. They’re not phasing out coal, they’re building lots of new gas plants, and they’re not building enough clean energy.

We’ll talk about a damning new analysis of utility climate goals from the Sierra Club that digs into the actual numbers.

Then, the urgency of a national clean energy standard. What are the new political pieces in place to get a nationwide target in place? And can we build it to serve marginalized communities? A new analysis maps out how.

Finally, the bombshell news that General Motors will only sell zero-emissions cars by 2035. How hard is it to turn around a company born and raised in internal combustion? A cautionary tale from Volkswagen offers some answers.  

Dr. Leah Stokes, professor at UC Santa Barbara, joins Stephen, Katherine and Jigar this week. Leah is the co-author behind the two reports we are discussing.

Leah is also co-host of A Matter of Degrees, a new podcast that looks at the forces behind climate change -- and how “climate curious” citizens can tackle it.

Resources:

Thanks to our sponsors:

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy. Wärtsilä is leading the energy transition with the Atlas of 100% Renewable Energy. Stick with us at the end of the show to hear how this tool is helping us understand how to best spend stimulus dollars on the clean-energy transition.

 This podcast is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions around the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone — and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

This podcast is also brought to you by CPower. CPower and its team of energy experts are back with a webinar series aimed to help organizations make sense of the chaos and optimize their energy use and spend in 2021. This hour-long webinar series features market-by-market breakdowns to help energy planners make the right decisions. Register today.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 05, 2021
Reversing Trump's Destruction
01:02:55

It was hard to keep up with the destruction of the Trump era. And it’s already getting hard to keep up with the rebuilding. 

This week brought a series of actions on climate change from the White House that are building a framework for the climate economy. 

Sam Ricketts, a prominent climate policy advisor, told the Los Angeles Times: “This is the most ambitious climate platform put forward by an American president...It is mobilizing the entirety of the federal government in an unprecedented way. Every agency is now a climate agency.”

We’ll sort through it.

Then, last week we covered distributed energy modeling. Now we get to the practice: how do we rebuild markets to accommodate a ton of small-scale resources? They’re doing it in the UK. We’ve lagged in the US. We’ll compare.

Finally, Elon Musk says he’ll give $100M to carbon-capture tech that shows promise. He can’t run rockets on electricity. Will he get his carbon-neutral jet fuel?

  • Greentech Media: Biden Executive Orders Set Broad Federal Role in Clean Energy and Climate Change Mitigation
  • LATimes: Biden Orders Sweeping Actions to Pause Drilling and Fight Climate Change
  • Greentech Media: New UK DERMS Project Targets Flexibility Across Distribution and Transmission Grids
  • Twitter: Cisco DeVries’ Feed on the Dissing of OhmConnect
  • NBC News: Elon Musk to Offer $100 Million Prize for 'Best' Carbon Capture Tech
  • Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research A Review of the Role of Fossil Fuel Based Carbon Capture and Storage in the Energy System.

 

This podcast is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions around the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone — and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

This podcast is also brought to you by CPower. CPower and its team of energy experts are back with a webinar series aimed to help organizations make sense of the chaos and optimize their energy use and spend in 2021. This hour-long webinar series features market-by-market breakdowns to help energy planners make the right decisions. Register today.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 29, 2021
Why Local Solar + Storage Is a Pillar of the Net-Zero Grid
00:59:54

This week, we finally left behind a destructive regime that thwarted environmental policy at every turn. We exchanged it for a government putting climate experts and clean-energy doers in its highest ranks in a way that no prior administration has done before.

What comes next?

First up this week: If Biden wants his $2 trillion climate spending plan to make a bigger impact, should he emphasize rooftop solar and small-scale batteries? A leading modeler says a local solar-storage plan could save hundreds of billions of dollars as we build out the net-zero grid.

Then: the board members of major corporations are often ignorant about climate change and what it takes to address it, according to a new report from NYU’s Stern business school. Why is that true – still? What can be done about it?

And last: Should you sign up for your utility’s green power program? Is there a better way to guarantee that your monthly power bill supports the world you envision? We’ll answer a listener question.

Recommended reading:

  • VCE: Why Local Solar for All Costs Less
  • Local Solar For All Roadmap
  • LA Times: Boiling Point: How rooftop solar could save Americans $473 billion
  • Bloomberg: Many Corporate Boards Don’t Fully Understand the Climate Crisis
  • Harvard Business Review: Boards Are Obstructing ESG — at Their Own Peril
  • NREL: Voluntary Green Power Procurement - 2019 Utility Green Pricing Ranks
  • Energy Sage: What to look for, and availability of community solar


This podcast is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions around the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

This podcast is also brought to you by CPower. CPower and its team of energy experts are back with a webinar series aimed to help organizations make sense of the chaos and optimize their energy use and spend in 2021. This hour-long webinar series features market-by-market breakdowns to help energy planners make the right decisions. Register today.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 22, 2021
Watt It Takes: BlocPower CEO Donnel Baird
00:59:48

BlocPower CEO Donnel Baird is on a mission to clean up old, inefficient buildings in America’s cities -- and help people who are exposed to the worst pollution. 

BlocPower was founded in 2012. It’s raised venture capital from Kapor Capital and Andreesen Horowitz. But that process was not easy for a company with a mostly non-white leadership team. As a black founder, Donnel was turned down 200 times before any venture firms were willing to back his vision.

“It was really difficult for us raising capital. One of our investors when I talked to him two or three years ago and said I was struggling to raise capital, he was like ‘yeah man, just hire some white people and send them into the fundraising meetings and it’ll clear things up,’” explains Donnel.

BlocPower is a Brooklyn, New York startup electrifying and weatherizing buildings in underserved communities -- slashing pollution and saving money. This includes housing units, churches, community centers. 

And the mission for Donnel isn’t about just about hitting milestones for investors. It’s about changing the fabric of underserved communities that are plagued by pollution and energy poverty. That’s because Donnel has lived it himself.

In this episode, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch talks with Donnel about how he channeled his frustration and anger around racial unfairness into a business model for the energy transition.

Listen to all our past episodes of Watt It Takes here. This series is normally recorded in front of a live audience, but we’re now recording the interviews remotely. See future events from Powerhouse here.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world. Sungrow has delivered more than 10 gigawatts of inverters to the Americas alone -- and 120 gigawatts in total across the globe. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by CPower. CPower and its team of energy experts are back with a webinar series aimed to help organizations make sense of the chaos and optimize their energy use and spend in 2021. This hour-long webinar series features market-by-market breakdowns to help energy planners make the right decisions. Register today.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 14, 2021
America's Drastic Shift: What Are Paths for Climate?
01:02:13

In the final moments of 2020, the most important U.S. energy legislation in a decade flew in under the radar, attached to the coronavirus relief and government funding bill. 

It’s an astonishing collection of measures. It sets aside $35 Billion in new funding for clean energy R&D, phases out some of the most egregious greenhouse gases, and extends tax credits for wind, solar, nuclear, and carbon capture. What’s the impact?

It would have been a bill big enough to discuss this whole episode. But it’s been eclipsed by the possibility of more ambitious legislation under a Democrat-controlled Congress -- thanks to some big Senate wins in Georgia on Wednesday.

With a window of action open, how much can get done in the next two years? We’ll dig in. 

Lastly, one of the biggest business stories from the last year: Tesla. A stratospheric stock price, strong sales growth, and the second richest man in the world. What do Elon Musk’s fortunes foreshadow for EVs?

Recommended reading:

  • Greentech Media: What Renewable Energy and Energy Storage Did, and Didn’t, Get from Congress This Week
  • E&E News: 13 Ways the Massive Omnibus Hits Energy
  • Dave Roberts Volts Podcast: The Energy Act
  • E&ENews: Things to Watch in a 50-50 Senate 
  • Bloomberg: Tesla Poised for Expansion After Just Missing 2020 Target
  • Barron’s: Tesla Passes a Market-Cap Milestone. It’s Worth More Than Facebook.


The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, a leading provider of PV inverter solutions across the world. Sungrow is supplying inverters for a series of new, world-class solar facilities that will support Facebook’s operations with 100% renewable energy. Learn more about Sungrow’s cutting-edge solar projects.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by CPower. CPower and its team of energy experts are back with a webinar series aimed to help organizations make sense of the chaos and optimize their energy use and spend in 2021. This hour-long webinar series features market-by-market breakdowns to help energy planners make the right decisions. Register today.

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Jan 08, 2021
Year-Ender: Listeners Choose Top Trends of 2020
01:16:21

Goodbye 2020. We’re not sad to see you go. 

Even though this year brought a lot of outright bad stuff, it also brought a lot of positive, nuanced storylines in energy.

We’re going to tackle as many of them as possible, using suggestions from our listeners as a guide.

And no, they won’t be pandemic-related. Not explicitly anyway. You can listen to our previous episode for our pandemic picks.

We’ll tackle your suggestions: breakout technologies, political corruption, corporate momentum, energy justice, new financing approaches, and regulatory change.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy, leading the transition toward a 100% renewable energy future. Wärtsilä launched “The Path to 100%” to accelerate the transition to renewables. Become part of the discussion.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Honeywell, a leading supplier of IOT solutions to mission-critical industries around the world. Honeywell Smart Energy helps utilities transform their grid operations through advanced solutions and targeted services from edge to cloud. Learn more.

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Dec 20, 2020
Introducing: Google’s Quest for 24/7 Clean Energy
00:42:15

We’re featuring an episode of Google’s new podcast about data centers, called Where the Internet Lives

What would it take to run data centers on clean electricity, everywhere, every hour of the day? In this episode, we look at the evolution of data center energy use in a world confronting the threat of climate change – and explore promising ideas that could fuel a carbon-free future.

Subscribe anywhere you get podcasts. Or find it in these top platforms:


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Dec 15, 2020
Revisiting Pandemic Predictions for Energy
01:05:50

As we close out 2020, we are diving into the top stories that defined this frenzied and heavy year. 

This week, we’ll start the show with a look back at how Covid re-shaped the energy transition. We’re going to revisit some predictions that did -- and didn’t -- come true. Next episode, we’ll look at a wider range of (non-pandemic) 2020 stories.

Then later in the show, advertising and PR professionals are suddenly being pressured to reveal how much of their income is from fossil fuel clients. Are firms in this industry the next to lose their social license?

And last: what could a Youth Climate Corps accomplish? And how should it be set up? We look to a Depression-era program to rally the passions of America’s climate generation. 

Resources:


The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy, leading the transition toward a 100% renewable energy future. Wärtsilä launched “The Path to 100%” to accelerate the transition to renewables. Become part of the discussion.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Honeywell, a leading supplier of IOT solutions to mission-critical industries around the world. Honeywell Smart Energy helps utilities transform their grid operations through advanced solutions and targeted services from edge to cloud. Learn more.

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Dec 11, 2020
A New President’s Powerful Tool: Climate Risk Disclosure
00:54:18

Climate risk is now the topic du jour in Washington. The Biden transition team identified it as a powerful policy lever in the business world that could help the president-elect’s climate agenda without Congress. 

But how? Could it happen at the Securities and Exchange Commission where companies disclose legal and other threats? What about a role for the Federal Reserve? What can Biden himself do?

This week, we’ll look at how federal action may happen -- and what impact it would have on emissions.

Then, from the first days in office, Trump’s team went after environmental protections with the focus of trained assassins. Those efforts are only intensifying in the weeks before Trump leaves the White House. How might Biden stop these “regulatory bombs?”

Last: reactions to Biden’s hires are revealing a split in the climate community. What do they reveal about theories of change in this changing political moment?

  • E&E News: Biden to Shine Light on Corporate Climate Risk
  • Bloomberg: All Businesses Everywhere, Get Ready to Disclose Your Climate Risk
  • New York Times: E.P.A.’s Final Deregulatory Rush Runs Into Open Staff Resistance
  • Propublica: Tracking the Trump Administration’s “Midnight Regulations”
  • Twitter: Bill McKibben defense of Brian Deese
  • Twitter: Matt Yglesias on the only way to make climate progress


The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy, leading the transition toward a 100% renewable energy future. Wärtsilä launched “The Path to 100%” to accelerate the transition to renewables. Become part of the discussion.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Honeywell, a leading supplier of IoT solutions to mission-critical industries around the world. Honeywell Smart Energy helps utilities transform their grid operations through advanced solutions and targeted services from edge to cloud. Learn more.

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Dec 03, 2020
Watt It Takes: EVgo's Cathy Zoi on Scaling EV Infrastructure
00:48:28

Cathy Zoi has seen it all. She’s studied and worked in oil, gas and clean energy since the Reagan Era. Now as CEO of charging company EVgo, she knows the future of energy is coming fast. 

“Rideshare drivers are now starting to drive EVs, those folks need to charge once a day away from home, and they need to do it fast. When COVID hit, delivery drivers for food deliveries needed to charge on our network. Fleet companies like Amazon. So every month that goes by, there is a new opportunity, says Zoi.”

Cathy has a breadth of energy and cleantech experience working in leadership roles at non-profits, startups, venture capital, academia, and government agencies.

Cathy was on the team that developed the original Energy Star rating when she worked at the Environmental Protection Agency. She was chief of staff in the White House Office on Environmental Policy in the Clinton-Gore Administration. And she is co-founder and executive chairman of Odyssey Energy, a software start-up bringing distributed clean power to developing countries. 

In this episode, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Cathy Zoi to discuss how that journey inevitably led her to electric transportation.

Listen to all our past episodes of Watt It Takes here. This series is normally recorded in front of a live audience. But we’re now recording the interviews remotely. See future events here.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy, leading the transition toward a 100% renewable energy future. Wärtsilä launched “The Path to 100%” to accelerate the transition to renewables. Become part of the discussion.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Honeywell, a leading supplier of IoT solutions to mission-critical industries around the world. Honeywell Smart Energy helps utilities transform their grid operations through advanced solutions and targeted services from edge to cloud. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Dec 02, 2020
Automakers Knew About Climate Change 50 Years Ago
01:06:15

In the 1960s, scientists who worked for General Motors and Ford discovered that the exhaust from their cars was very likely changing the climate. They made presentations at conferences. They briefed senior executives. And then, they were publicly contradicted and their work was suppressed. 

We’ll talk to Maxine Joselow, the journalist who reported the story for E&E News over many months. She talked with more than two dozen former GM and Ford employees, retired auto industry executives, academics, and environmentalists about what the companies knew about climate change five decades ago.

It leaves the reader wondering: what if automakers had taken the problem more seriously a half-century ago?

Then, plenty of conservative states are embracing renewables. But now 100% clean energy mandates are spreading to redder states. The latest is Arizona: a place where elected officials and a giant utility previously worked to stop the march of clean energy. We’ll look at the shift. 

And last: can a Marshall Plan for fading coal communities rebuild America’s former industrial regions?


The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy, leading the transition toward a 100% renewable energy future. Wärtsilä launched “The Path to 100%” to accelerate the transition to renewables. Become part of the discussion.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Honeywell, a leading supplier of IoT solutions to mission-critical industries around the world. Honeywell Smart Energy helps utilities transform their grid operations through advanced solutions and targeted services from edge to cloud. Learn more.

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Nov 20, 2020
Day-One Climate Priorities for Biden’s White House
01:03:37

Has 2020 – which seemed irredeemable – just done a 180? We’ll be back in the Paris agreement, Biden’s got a zero-emissions plan, East Asia’s making big moves, and there might even be a vaccine for Covid-19.

President-Elect Joe Biden has already named his environment transition team. And he discussed climate change with four European heads of state this Tuesday.

He also has a “Build Back Better” one-pager that looks a lot like the green recovery plans in Europe we’ve been discussing for months. 

We’re going to look at specific things a Biden administration can do in each identified category to get to net-zero emissions.

Then, 2020 is turning into the year of net-zero. Japan and South Korea have now promised to zero out carbon emissions by 2050. That preserves the possibility of keeping warming at or below 1.5º C. 

This fall, China also issued its first-ever net-zero date. That means most of East Asia has now committed to eliminating all new carbon emissions by a certain date. 

President Moon Jae-in of South Korea actually ran and won on a platform of a Green New Deal for Korea. He’s talking about a ‘just transition’ away from dirty energy. And Japan says it will rethink its reliance on coal. 

These are big stories on their own. Bigger in the context of America’s re-engagement with the world as we head toward climate negotiations in 2021. 

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy, leading the transition toward a 100% renewable energy future. Wärtsilä launched “The Path to 100%” to accelerate the transition to renewables. Become part of the discussion.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Honeywell, a leading supplier of IoT solutions to mission-critical industries around the world. Honeywell Smart Energy helps utilities transform their grid operations through advanced solutions and targeted services from edge to cloud. Learn more.

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Nov 13, 2020
How Customers Will Shape Zero-Carbon Utility Targets [Special Content From Oracle]
00:29:21

This sponsored episode was produced in collaboration with GTM Creative Strategies and the Opower team at Oracle Utilities.

The last two years have brought a surge of plans for zero-carbon energy from some of the biggest power providers in the world. Dozens of U.S. utilities have committed to decarbonizing by 80% or more by 2050.

"Two thirds of U.S. consumers are now served by utilities with carbon or emissions reduction goals," says Scott Neuman, group vice president of Opower, at Oracle Utilities.

National Grid is the latest utility to up the ante. The electricity and gas supplier now wants to hit net-zero emissions by 2050.

"In terms of decarbonizing and reducing emissions across society, it can break out into three broad areas, decarbonizing generational power, decarbonizing transport and decarbonizing heat," says Badar Kahn, the presdient of National Grid US.

In this episode, we’ll hear from Badar Kahn and Scott Neuman about how zero-carbon goals may reshape utility operations -- and reshape the role of the customer.

"We're taking everything we've learned, everything we've built, and focusing our team on changing behaviors that will deliver the greatest emission reductions as quickly, affordably and accurately as possible," says Neuman.

Opower is working every single day to help your utility build a clean energy future. Utilities around the world rely on Opower to connect with their customers. Opower helps people save energy, save money, and adopt all the clean energy products & services we need right now.

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Nov 10, 2020
Can Biden Undo Trump's Damage?
00:47:58

This week: the future of the planet depends on the mail. 

The mail-in votes are still being counted, but it’s increasingly likely that Joe Biden will become America’s next president.

As of this recording on Thursday morning, Biden’s path to the presidency looks much better than Trump’s. It could be Thursday night or Friday when we get calls for Georgia, Pennsylvania, Nevada and North Carolina. 

We do not have an official result. But the direction feels clearer -- and we have plenty of local results, too.

Meanwhile, America is officially out of the Paris Climate Accord. What happens next?

In this episode, we’re just going to cover a smattering of stories coming out of the election.

Plus, we’ll answer a bunch of listener questions.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Wärtsilä Energy, leading the transition toward a 100% renewable energy future. Wärtsilä launched “The Path to 100%” to accelerate the transition to renewables. Become part of the discussion.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Honeywell, a leading supplier of IoT solutions to mission-critical industries around the world. Honeywell Smart Energy helps utilities transform their grid operations through advanced solutions and targeted services from edge to cloud. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 05, 2020
Climate's Role in the Final Days of the Campaign
00:56:13

We’re just a few days out from the election -- and how could we talk about anything else? Climate is finally beginning to play the kind of role that we have waited so long for. 

In this pre-election episode, we’ll recap where things stand: and how energy and climate are playing into late-stage messaging of Biden and Trump. 

Plus, what are some of the crucial down-ballot races we’re watching election night? 

And last: Five years have passed since the largest terrestrial natural gas disaster in U.S. history. A methane well in the Los Angeles hills broke open and shot a plume of methane into the air for four months.  

What’s changed since the Aliso Canyon leak? And how did it accelerate distributed resources in the state?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more



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Oct 30, 2020
Watt It Takes: Why Steph Speirs Wants Solar For All
00:52:55

This week on Watt It Takes: Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Solstice CEO Steph Speirs.

Solistice is a community solar company trying to make PV accessible to everyone.

Steph Speirs grew up one of three kids, first generation, in Hawaii. Her mom had immigrated from Korea. She knows what eviction feels like, and what it’s like to skirt homelessness. And she knows how a poor credit score can sink a human being.

She got a scholarship to a private high school, became a National Merit scholar and accrued three masters degrees at Yale, Princeton and MIT.  

In this interview, we’ll hear how her time in the Obama administration led to a summer internship with the non-profit impact investor Acumen. She worked on solar lanterns in India. Her time in Yemen, India, and then Pakistan led to an awakening about energy injustice in the United States. 

Solstice has now developed demand for 100 MW of community solar and just closed its biggest funding round so far. 

To learn more about future speakers and attending a live event, go to Powerhouse.fund and click on the events tab. You can listen to all of the episodes of Watt It Takes here.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 23, 2020
Taking Stock of Job Losses in Clean Energy
00:46:40

In a year when clean energy and clean vehicle jobs were supposed to increase by some 175,000, we are down by half a million jobs. 

We will tell you why, and explain the numbers. What will reverse the decline?

Then: Did New Jersey just pass the most sweeping environmental justice law in the country? The new law will mean big changes for industrial sites -- and the neighborhoods that often feel their worst impacts. 

And last: What about all that nice, flat water in hydropower reservoirs? Could we float solar panels on it? The Department of Energy says we could. And it would actually produce massive amounts of electricity. 

  • E2: Clean Energy Sector Enters Final Months of 2020 Down 478,000 Jobs
  • Bloomberg: Most U.S. Oil Job Losses in Pandemic Are Lasting
  • Fortune: The Oil and Gas Industry Has Lost More Than 100,000 Jobs This Year
  • NJ.com: Landmark Law to Protect N.J.'s Poorest Communities From Pollution
  • DOE: U.S. Hydropower Potential from Existing Non-powered Dams


The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 16, 2020
Keep Calm and Close Clean Energy Deals [Special Content]
00:11:25

Manish Hebbar architects billions of dollars worth of equity and debt deals in clean energy.

He’s able to stay methodical and calm in the middle of deals that are very stressful, involving multiple buyers and counter-parties. 

“M&A transactions are those types of deals, where it's a fast-paced environment, every minute and every hour matters. It's really about who can stay the course and work through each round of progression.”

That skill goes back to his time as a Lieutenant in the Navy. It’s also influenced by his experience evaluating risk at Citibank during the height of the 2008 financial crisis. 

Today, Manish is a managing director at CohnReznick Capital. He’s brokering some of clean energy’s biggest mergers and acquisitions -- like an 800-plus megawatt portfolio of wind projects in the U.S. and Canada in 2019. 

In this special episode, produced in collaboration with CohnReznick Capital, we’ll hear how Manish used his experience in the military and financial risk to find his way into the fast-paced world of clean energy.

CohnReznick builds relationships, closes deals, and helps clean energy companies excel. Learn more about how people like Manish can help you work through some of the most complicated transactions in energy.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 14, 2020
Exxon Is Losing the Energy Transition
00:59:03

What does it mean when the world’s largest generator of wind and solar outpaces the most iconic oil company in market value? We’re talking about NextEra Energy and ExxonMobil. What does the flip tell us about the energy transition?

Plus, reporters at Bloomberg got their hands on documents that show ExxonMobil plans to pretty significantly ramp up emissions in the coming years. Is this the planet’s most recalcitrant company?

Then, the flattening of hydrocarbon growth will change global political power. But do we really know how yet? We’ll discuss a new piece from Jason Bordoff about the surprising geopolitics of energy.

Lastly, a lot of manufacturing relies on very high heat. Are there ways to reach those temperatures cleanly? We’ll look at some new developments in the steel industry.

Recommended reading:

  • Bloomberg: Exxon’s Plan for Surging Carbon Emissions Revealed in Leaked Documents 
  • Barrons: Green-Oriented NextEra Nears ExxonMobil in Market cap
  • Wall Street Journal: NextEra Energy Made Takeover Approach to Duke Energy
  • Foreign Policy: Everything You Think About the Geopolitics of Climate Change is Wrong 
  • IRENA: A New World, The Geopolitics of the Energy Transformation
  • Mighty Earth: ArcelorMittal’s New Carbon-Neutral Commitment Could Catalyze Steel
  • SSAB: “First in fossil-free steel using ‘Hybrit’ technology”
  • Greentech Media: How to Slash the Industrial Emissions that are Heating the Planet
  • Greentech Media: The Building Industry Gets Serious About Embodied Carbon
  • Columbia Center on Energy Policy : Low-carbon heat solutions for heavy industry
  • A Matter of Degrees podcast with Leah Stokes and Katharine Wilkinson


The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 09, 2020
What's Behind China's Zero-Carbon Aim?
00:51:15

China, the country currently pouring the most carbon into the atmosphere, is making a promise to get to zero emissions – 40 years from now. Is it a breakthrough? Or is it a plan to keep burning coal? Is it both? We’ll hash it out. 

Then, the Governor of California wants to stop selling any new cars that run on gasoline – in 15 years. It’s ambitious, can it be done? Is it legal? What will that take?

And last, a flurry of serious commitments from top American brands – Walmart, Google, Apple.  Each of them is super challenging for a different reason. But also groundbreaking. We’ll dig in.

Resources:

  • The Guardian: China Pledges to Become Carbon Neutral Before 2060 
  • Bloomberg: China’s Top Climate Scientists Map Out Path to 2060 Goal
  • L.A. Times: Newsom Orders 2035 Phaseout of Gas-Powered Vehicles
  • Axios: Walmart Aims for Zero Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 2040
  • GTM: Google Pledges 24/7 Carbon-Free Energy by 2030


The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 03, 2020
How a Changed Supreme Court Could Derail Climate Progress
01:00:24

Does the loss of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg mean the future of federal climate policy is in jeopardy? What will a changed Supreme Court mean for climate change, and for the all-important endangerment finding? The Gang weighs in. 

Then, the great plastic cover-up. How important are plastics to the profits of fossil fuel companies? We dive into an important investigation from NPR and Frontline into how fossil fuel companies hoodwinked the public on plastics recycling.

Then last, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is out with an important and long-awaited policy that opens the door for all types of distributed energy – hot water heaters, batteries, rooftop solar, electric cars – to feed energy into the grid in the aggregate. Are we finally there?     

Recommended reading, viewing:

  • Scientific American: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Leaves a Nuanced Legacy on Env. Issues
  • Politico: Ginsburg Left a Long Environmental Legacy
  • Axios: The Climate Stakes of the Supreme Court Fight
  • Guardian: Oil industry lobbies US to help weaken Kenya’s strong stance on plastic waste
  • Fast Company: Surprise: Your cleaning supplies are full of fossil fuel
  • Frontline: Plastic Wars
  • NPR: How big oil misled the public into believing plastic would be recycled
  • Greentech Media: ‘Game-Changer’ FERC Order Opens Grid Markets to DER
  • Houston Chronicle: FERC opens grid to power aggregators
  • Twitter: Peter Cavan’s thread
  • Twitter: Ari Peskoe’s thread

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Sep 25, 2020
Watt It Takes: Michael Liebreich
00:57:01

This week on Watt It Takes: Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Michael Liebreich.

You may know Liebreich as the brain behind New Energy Finance, which was sold to Bloomberg in 2009.

But before that company, Leibreich started a ski-based travel startup and invested in a portfolio of companies that lost 90 percent of their value in the dot-com bust.

After that, he was "unemployable." But he used a team of interns to begin compiling data on clean energy investment. in this episode, he tells the story of how that became a 140-employee business that Bloomberg eventually acquired.

This conversation was recorded live (remotely) as part of an interview series in collaboration with Powerhouse and Greentech Media.

To learn more about future speakers and attending a live event, go to Powerhouse.fund and click on the events tab. You can listen to all of the episodes of Watt It Takes here.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. In fact, KORE Power is building a large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility here in the U.S. Once it’s operational, the 1 million square foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Sep 22, 2020
Renewables Beat Fossils on Europe's Grid
00:50:11

In the first half of 2020, renewables beat out fossil fuels on the grid in Europe for the first time. They didn’t only beat out coal -- they beat out all fossil fuels put together. We’ll look at what the milestone means.

Then, 30 major companies have come together in a new joint lobbying organization to flex united power for clean energy. Will it make renewables a bigger political force? And what will they be fighting for?

Then, your view of Texas is probably out-of-date. We look at the dawn of Big Solar in Texas and peek at the ERCOT interconnection queue -- it’s almost all green.    

Recommended reading:


The Energy Gang is brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. In fact, KORE Power is building a large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility here in the U.S. Once it’s operational, the 1 million square foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Sep 11, 2020
Watt It Takes: Van Jones
01:05:30

This week on Watt It Takes: Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with green jobs pioneer Van Jones.

Jones may be best known for “The Van Jones Show” and “The Redemption Project,” which both air on CNN. He is also the author of three best-selling books, including “The Green Collar Economy.”

But long before the high-profile Green New Deal, Jones was also a powerful voice for bringing clean energy jobs to black and brown communities. He helped spearhead the Green Jobs Act of 2007, the first time the country deliberately trained workers for the future clean economy. 

In this episode, Jones reveals a little-told backstory of his childhood and early life, his time at Yale Law School, and the painful time he briefly joined, and then left, the Obama Administration as the green jobs czar.

This conversation was recorded live (remotely) as part of an interview series in collaboration with Powerhouse and Greentech Media.

To learn more about future speakers and attending a live event, go to Powerhouse.fund and click on the events tab. You can listen to all of the episodes of Watt It Takes here.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. In fact, KORE Power is building a large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility here in the U.S. Once it’s operational, the 1 million square foot facility will have 12 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Sep 04, 2020
Two Months Before the US Election, Climate Stays on Top
01:02:58

We are just over two months away from America’s presidential election. And that means we are days away from one of the most consequential political moments ever for the planet. 

Joe Biden put climate and cleantech jobs at the top of his priorities in last week’s nomination speech. His VP pick, Kamala Harris, says she’ll use her background as a prosecutor to hold industries accountable for climate change. And climate donors are pouring millions into their campaign.

Meanwhile, Trump was in Pennsylvania telling oil and gas workers that Biden is going to end their way of life. But a new poll from Resources for the Future shows that climate is a higher priority than ever for voters. We’ll start with a political roundup.

Then, a story about what’s at stake in the election. More details emerge about Trump Administration censorship of clean-energy research. What is the Seams study, and what happened to it?

Finally, we’ll take a bunch of questions from listeners about wave/tidal energy, plastic pellets, small-modular nuclear, geothermal heat, and non-wires alternatives.

This episode was recorded live in front of an in-home audience. Thanks to everyone for joining us!

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Fluence, a global leader in battery-based energy storage technology and services. From commercializing the first grid-connected battery systems in 2008 to the multi-gigawatt fleet being deployed for customers globally today, the Fluence team is ensuring that storage is the cornerstone of the electric future. Learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Nor-Cal Control. As a total controls and monitoring solution provider, Nor-Cal supports every phase of your project, from turnkey design solutions to post-OEM enhancements, troubleshooting and training. As the only system integrator in solar PV that comes from a traditional power generation background, Nor-Cal has earned a reputation as the “strongest in controls.” Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 26, 2020
What Caused California’s Blackouts?
01:03:17

Last week, short-term blackouts rolled across an overheated California after the grid operator said there was not enough power to meet demand. 

This wasn’t supposed to happen again. Not after the Enron scandal. Not after 19 years of reforms. We have a very different grid now. 

Renewables skeptics, including President Trump, are seizing on the incident. What really happened? Where do we place blame? We explain the confluence of grid-management factors.

Then, coal power generation in the United States plunged 30% in just the first half of this year. But what Asia, where 80% of coal gets burned now? What hope is there for a coal decline there? We’ll look at China, Japan and India.

Finally, stunning public health research. What happens when you combine this up-to-date science with the new, low-cost renewable energy? You get a blockbuster picture, that’s what. We’ll examine new research that shows the health benefits alone pay for our energy transition. 

Recommended reading:

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Fluence, a global leader in battery-based energy storage technology and services. From commercializing the first grid-connected battery systems in 2008 to the multi-gigawatt fleet being deployed for customers globally today, the Fluence team is ensuring that storage is the cornerstone of the electric future. Learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Nor-Cal Control. As a total controls and monitoring solution provider, Nor-Cal supports every phase of your project, from turnkey design solutions to post-OEM enhancements, troubleshooting and training. As the only system integrator in solar PV that comes from a traditional power generation background, Nor-Cal has earned a reputation as the “strongest in controls.” Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 21, 2020
The Economic Case for Electrifying Everything
01:01:27

“Electrify everything” isn’t just a good slogan. It’s the fastest way to decarbonize and create tens of millions of jobs -- and it can be done using off-the-shelf technology. 

A respected squad of researchers did the math on a swap-out of every aging boiler, truck and power plant -- and replacing it with equipment that won’t burn fossil fuels ever again. We’ll dig into a new analysis from Rewiring America

Then, BP has more details around its plan to become the first oil major to transition away from the hydrocarbon-drilling business. What do they amount to? Can the company actually do it this time?

Last, PSEG promised to do right by its customers after failing them during Hurricane Sandy. So why were Long Islanders left sweltering for days after a few high winds from the remnants of Hurricane Isaias? And what does it portend in a future of stronger storms?   

Note: we have a “live” show on August 25th. We’re wrapping up this crazy summer with another live conversation from our homes to yours. Sign up here.

Our guest co-host this week is Melissa Lott of the Columbia Center on Global Energy Policy.

Recommended reading:

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Fluence, a global leader in battery-based energy storage technology and services. From commercializing the first grid-connected battery systems in 2008 to the multi-gigawatt fleet being deployed for customers globally today, the Fluence team is ensuring that storage is the cornerstone of the electric future. Learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Nor-Cal Control. As a total controls and monitoring solution provider, Nor-Cal supports every phase of your project, from turnkey design solutions to post-OEM enhancements, troubleshooting and training. As the only system integrator in solar PV that comes from a traditional power generation background, Nor-Cal has earned a reputation as the “strongest in controls.” Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 14, 2020
The Era of ‘Super Hybrid’ Renewables?
01:06:16

On this week’s episode of The Energy Gang: big energy companies are putting together bids for multi- renewable power -- and it’s merchant. 

Global investment in offshore wind more than quadrupled in the first half of this year. More new wind farms were approved at the height of the pandemic than during all last year. 

Some of offshore projects include storage, and even hydrogen. Some of them include floating solar panels. Is this what the future of projects looks like for oil & gas majors? 

Then, is green hydrogen here to stay? One Saudi project unveiled last month is at gigawatt scale. Another major utility is getting out of America’s largest coal plant and making investments in solar-generated hydrogen. Bloom Energy is even making electrolyzers. What does this activity tell us? 

And last, there’s a reason Henrik Fisker hasn’t gone away, even after the demise of the Fisker Karma. We dive into the new Fisker Ocean SUV and a spate of other electric car announcements and ask: Does parity on EV prices even matter? 

Join us with guest co-host Melissa Lott of the Columbia Center on Global Energy Policy. 

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: Super-Hybrid: Dutch Offshore Farm to Include Floating Solar, Storage & Hydrogen
  • GTM: Dutch Offshore Wind Tender Faces Concerns of Depressed Interest
  • Utility Dive Opinion: Geothermal Energy Is Surging 
  • GTM: NextEra Energy to Build Its First Green Hydrogen Plant in Florida
  • GTM: World’s Largest Green Hydrogen Project Unveiled in Saudi Arabia
  • Inside Climate News: How Soon Will An EV Cost the Same as a Gasoline Vehicle? 
  • Reuters-NYT: Electric Car Maker Fisker to Go Public Through SPAC Deal at $2.9 Billion

The Interchange is brought to you by Fluence, a global leader in battery-based energy storage technology and services. From commercializing the first grid-connected battery systems in 2008 to the multi-gigawatt fleet being deployed for customers globally today, the Fluence team is ensuring that storage is the cornerstone of the electric future. Learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Nor-Cal Control. As a total controls and monitoring solution provider, Nor-Cal supports every phase of your project, from turnkey design solutions to post-OEM enhancements, troubleshooting and training. As the only system integrator in solar PV that comes from a traditional power generation background, Nor-Cal has earned a reputation at the “strongest in controls.” Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 07, 2020
Watt It Takes: Opower's Dan Yates on the Origins of Behavioral Efficiency
00:53:18

Dan Yates and his co-founder Alex Laskey built Opower, an efficiency company that saves more energy every year than the hoover dam can generate. It was based on cutting-edge behavioral science -- but it wasn’t always clear how the science would play out.

“It wasn’t okay with us to just know that there was going to be a result. It had to be a certain level, otherwise it wasn’t economic. And in the first few months, the results came in and they weren’t changing behavior. The floor fell out from under me. I said, ‘oh my god, we have no idea if this is going to work.'”

Opower was founded in 2007 by Dan and Alex, two friends from Harvard. Dan knew software. Alex knew how to sell. And both of them wanted to build a company for environmental good.

Opower was based on a simple premise: send paper mailers to utility customers comparing their electricity use to their neighbors. If people saw they were doing poorly, they’d make changes. It worked.

Over time, Opower inked deals with the world’s biggest power companies and started processing vast amounts of smart meter data -- making it arguably the biggest energy efficiency success story in business. The company went public in 2014 and was sold to Oracle in 2016.

In this episode, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch talks with Dan about the science behind the idea, how Opower evolved and expanded, and why the company was eventually sold to Oracle.

Listen to all our past episodes of Watt It Takes here. This series is normally recorded in front of a live audience. But we’re now recording the interviews remotely. See future events here.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Fluence, a global leader in battery-based energy storage technology and services. From commercializing the first grid-connected battery systems in 2008 to the multi-gigawatt fleet being deployed for customers globally today, the Fluence team is ensuring that storage is the cornerstone of the electric future. Learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Nor-Cal Control. As a total controls and monitoring solution provider, Nor-Cal supports every phase of your project, from turnkey design solutions to post-OEM enhancements, troubleshooting and training. As the only system integrator in solar PV that comes from a traditional power generation background, Nor-Cal has earned a reputation at the “strongest in controls.” Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 29, 2020
Biden's Trillion-Dollar Climate Ambitions
01:01:01

Joe Biden just released a plan to address climate change on a trillion-dollar scale. Along with focusing on rapid deployment of renewables, it also devotes resources to environmental justice, sustainable housing, clean transportation, and networking.

What would it mean? And who's informing the ideas? We’ll dig in.

Then Facebook's disinformation problem. We look at why Facebook is rejecting the conclusions of its fact-checkers on some articles about climate change. We’re joined by Emily Atkin, climate journalist and founder of the newsletter Heated, who dug up some of the documents showing who’s making these decisions at Facebook. 

Then, U.S. attorneys in Ohio and Illinois have been busy investigating racketeering and bribery by high-ranking public officials who are doing the bidding of utility companies. In Ohio, the speaker of the House is arrested and in Illinois a utility is put on probation. There’s a common thread, and we tease it out. 

Recommended reading:

  • Biden Campaign: Climate Plan
  • Biden Campaign: Environmental Justice Commitments
  • GTM: Biden Pledges $2T in Clean Energy and Infrastructure Spending
  • Heated: Facebook Creates Fact-Checking Exemption for Climate Deniers
  • NYT: How Facebook Handles Climate Disinformation
  • WaPo: GOP Ohio House speaker Arrested in Connection to $60 million Bribery Scheme
  • Axios: Ohio House speaker charged in $60 million bribery investigation
  • GTM: ComEd Agrees to $200M Fine on Federal Bribery Charge

The Interchange is brought to you by Fluence, a global leader in battery-based energy storage technology and services. From commercializing the first grid-connected battery systems in 2008 to the multi-gigawatt fleet being deployed for customers globally today, the Fluence team is ensuring that storage is the cornerstone of the electric future. Learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Nor-Cal Control. As a total controls and monitoring solution provider, Nor-Cal supports every phase of your project, from turnkey design solutions to post-OEM enhancements, troubleshooting and training. As the only system integrator in solar PV that comes from a traditional power generation background, Nor-Cal has earned a reputation at the “strongest in controls.” Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 24, 2020
The Most Complete Climate Policy Plan Ever?
01:04:43

A group of House lawmakers recently released a 547-page report on climate change. Reporters at E&E News call it “arguably the most comprehensive climate policy plan in American politics.”

The report spells out in great detail how to use Congressional policy to decarbonize the economy. It was the result of nearly a year of input from hundreds of experts, 17 hearings, and thousands of meetings.

This week, we’ll discuss why this report is so significant. We’ll also look at a companion infrastructure bill from House Democrats that makes clean energy a centerpiece. Can it become a reality after the election?

Then, drama for pipelines and batteries. We’ll look at a slew of legal decisions for pipelines in just two weeks, and what they mean for the future of fossil fuel infrastructure. 

Last, storage, unleashed. A court affirms FERC’s decision to treat energy storage just like any other power source in wholesale markets, opening the door to massive investment.

Resources: 

  • E&ENews: Democrats: 'We will turn this report into law'
  • WaPo: House Dems unveil ambitious climate package, steer toward a net-0 by 2050
  • Select Committee: Report
  • Bloomberg: Dakota Access Oil Line to Be Shut by Court in Blow for Trump
  • Bloomberg: State Court Judge Shuts Down Michigan’s Controversial Line 5
  • GTM: ‘Enormous Step’ for Energy Storage as Court Upholds FERC Order 841

The Interchange is brought to you by Fluence, a global leader in battery-based energy storage technology and services. From commercializing the first grid-connected battery systems in 2008 to the multi-gigawatt fleet being deployed for customers globally today, the Fluence team is ensuring that storage is the cornerstone of the electric future. Learn more.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Nor-Cal Control. As a total controls and monitoring solution provider, Nor-Cal supports every phase of your project, from turnkey design solutions to post OEM enhancements, troubleshooting and training. As the only system integrator in solar PV that comes from a traditional power generation background, Nor-Cal has earned a reputation at the “strongest in controls.” Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 17, 2020
Nikola vs Tesla: The Future of Trucking?
00:57:32

A rivalry is emerging between two companies trying to clean up the trucking industry: Nikola Motor versus Tesla Motors.

Tesla thinks battery-electric semi models are superior. Nikola thinks hydrogen is the best choice.

Neither company actually has a semi model on the road. But Elon Musk and Trevor Milton are talking up their visions for the future of heavy-duty trucks, with the hope of getting vehicles to customers in the next couple of years.

This week on The Energy Gang: Which company is best positioned to win? Which technology is superior? And who’s the bigger showman, Musk or Milton?

Then: are we finally entering the era of the electric pick-up truck? Lots of new models are hitting the internet. But when will they hit the roads? 

And last, Lyft wants every car in its fleet to be electric -- in 10 years. Most of the cars don’t belong to Lyft, so how are they going to make that happen? 

Co-hosts Katherine Hamilton, Jigar Shah and Stephen Lacey discuss. 

Resources:

  • Fast Company: 7 Things to Know About the Rising Tesla Competitor
  • Bloomberg/India Times: In the battle of electric-trucks, it is Nikola vs Tesla
  • HiConsumption: The 8 Electric Pickup Trucks Worth Waiting For
  • Elektrek: The year of the electric truck, finally?
  • Lyft: Path to Zero Emissions
  • Bloomberg: Lyft Says All Rides Will Be in Electric Cars by the End of 2030

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 10 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jun 26, 2020
An Anxious Accountant's Journey to the Top [Special Content]
00:13:22

This is an original, branded podcast from GTM Creative Strategies, produced in collaboration with CohnReznick.

In 2004, Ted Gunther started a new job at a big accounting firm. He led the team overseeing transactions in newly-deregulated electricity markets.

On his first day, he met the "Green Book," a thick, complicated book that sets standards for derivatives, hedging strategies and contracts structures.

“I still remember it vividly. [...] I remember the partner at the time putting that book on my desk and asking me to go ahead and read this and I just looked at it and I thought to myself, ‘Wow, that's going to be a lot to read.’

Ted used The Green Book to become an expert in complicated energy markets.

As his career blossomed, he started grappling with another complicated problem: anxiety.

It started to grip Ted during meetings. “The heart's really beating fast. You know you have something to say but you have a hard time just getting it out and saying it.” 

But he wasn’t going to let anxiety hold him back. Ted got help, moved past it, and became a partner at CohnReznick.

Today, he leads CohnReznick's renewable energy industry practice, and helps utilities and other energy companies execute all kinds of transactions, from long-term contracts to hedging strategies to tax structures.

In this special episode: how Ted is using the lessons from overcoming anxiety to help clients and colleagues grow.

CohnReznick serves a wide range of industries from tech to government to entertainment. It’s a leader in cutting-edge fields like renewable energy and cannabis. To learn more about how people like Ted can help you work through some of the most complicated transactions in energy, visit CohnReznick.

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Jun 25, 2020
A 90% Clean Grid Is Possible Quickly
01:04:59

Most decarbonization proposals play out over 30 years, aiming toward 2050. But a new roadmap from researchers at UC Berkeley and the policy firm Energy Innovation shows the grid can get 90% clean in just 15 years. 

No new fossil fuel plants. Lower rates for consumers. 85,000 lives saved. 500,000 additional jobs. Region by region, they lay out exactly how.

Prices have fallen so quickly that our understanding of what’s possible hasn’t kept pace. And now, say researchers, we have the chance to decarbonize much earlier than many thought possible.

This week, we’ll dig into the study and its implications.

Then: pollsters say Americans are “fully bought in” to a clean energy future — and want bigger societal issues addressed with it. But among crucial swing voters, is anyone even thinking about climate? We’ll look at what the latest polling tells us.

Lastly, BP decides its assets are worth $17 billion dollars less than they thought. It’s a massive write down. Is this a tipping point? A leading indicator? 

Co-hosts Katherine Hamilton, Jigar Shah and Stephen Lacey discuss. 

Resources:

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 10 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more

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Jun 19, 2020
Europe Invests Big in Green Recovery, While US Keeps the Status Quo
01:02:40

We’re back with another live show from quarantine. 

Europe is crafting a €750 billion recovery package in response to the economic impact of coronavirus. It will devote more than €200 billion directly to low-carbon infrastructure projects. That could enable hundreds of billions more for renewables, efficiency, clean public transport, and hydrogen.

Meanwhile, here in the U.S., our recent stimulus sent billions of dollars to debt-laden oil producers. With potentially one shot left to pass another recovery package, everyone is afraid to utter the word “climate.”

Coronavirus highlights yet another political and economic divide. How badly is America squandering this historic moment?

Plus, we address listener questions about offshore wind, undercovered climate solutions, career advice, and the mysterious ‘MOPR‘ that could override states’ clean energy preferences. 

Thanks to all our listeners who tuned in live!

Mentioned on the the show: 

Recommended reading: 

  • DeutcheWelle: Germany pushes electric cars in $145B stimulus. 
  • Bloomberg: The world’s greenest stimulus plan from Germany
  • BBC: Could the “Green stimulus” go global? 
  • Climate Change News: Spain unveils climate law to cut emissions to net zero by 2050
  • Bloomberg: Europe’s Recovery Plan Has Green Strings Attached

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1-million-square-foot facility will have 10 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more



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Jun 11, 2020
Breathing While Black in America
00:55:47

This week: as anger over police brutality explodes into the once-empty streets, we tackle an equally oppressive force for black Americans: environmental racism.

Coronavirus has exposed an unsettling reality for black and brown people, who are dying at higher rates in the country’s most polluted communities. We’re suddenly talking again about structural racism in policing and criminal justice. But the story of race, energy and the environment is also very important to understanding the anger of the moment.

We’re going to speak with a seasoned lawyer and organizer, who is working on the “mass melanization” of the environmental movement: Tamara Toles O’Laughlin, the North America Director for 350.org

Later in the show: if people lose their jobs and can’t pay their bills, what does that mean for their safety in a summer heat wave? And what does it mean for the financial health of utilities?

Finally, a new approach to residential demand response. Why are Consumers Energy, Uplight and Google giving away 100,000 free smart thermostats?

Don't forget to sign up for our FREE live show on June 9! Join us and submit your questions.

  • VOX: One reason why coronavirus is hitting black Americans the hardest
  • NY Times: In the Shadows of America’s Smokestacks, Virus is one More Deadly Risk
  • AP: 'Death By Racism': Part of America's DNA From the Start?
  • LA Times Boiling Point: Pandemic. Heat. And for the most vulnerable, no A/C
  • Gizmodo: Coronavirus, Summer Heat, and Poverty Could Create a 'Triple Whammy'
  • GTM: Can Free Smart Thermostats Get Homeowners to Enroll in Summertime Demand Response?
  • GTM: Residential Demand Response to Play Key Role Managing US Load This Summer

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

The Energy Gang is also brought to you by KORE Power. Based in the U.S., KORE Power is situated to meet the growing global demand of the energy storage market. KORE Power is building the first large-scale battery cell manufacturing facility in the U.S. owned by an American company. Once it’s operational, the 1 million square foot facility will have 10 gigawatt-hours of scalable manufacturing capacity. Learn more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jun 05, 2020
Watt It Takes: Building Distributed, 'Restorative' Hydropower
00:52:01

Gia Schneider and her brother Abe started Natel Energy based on a hydropower turbine their father designed. And after more than a decade of R&D, pilots, software development and a project for Apple, Natel is preparing for the next level of scale.

“Our objectives have actually not wavered. But they haven’t wavered because of rigid adherence to dogma, they have not wavered because we check in consistently about ‘is this the right problem to solve?’” says Schneider. 

Natel is commercializing a turbine for low-head hydro applications at old dams, irrigation canals and run-of-river projects. It’s designed to protect wildlife and drastically cut the ecological impact of hydropower. The original design came from Gia’s father, who started working on low-flow turbines back in the 1970s -- but it’s come a long way since then.

Gia also has a long history in energy. She worked at Constellation Energy and in Accenture’s utility practice. She started the energy and carbon trading desks at Credit Suisse. And in 2009, she launched Natel with her brother Abe.

In March, Natel closed an $11 million round led by Schneider Electric and Breakthrough Energy Ventures, just before the economy shut down.

In this episode, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch talks with Gia about starting a company with her family, how to balance short-term tech development with long-term deployment goals, and how coronavirus could impact the next phase of growth.

This series is normally recorded in front of a live audience. But we’re now recording the interviews remotely. See future events here

We’re hosting a live episode of The Energy Gang on June 9. Sign up for free here.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 29, 2020
The Battery Boom Continues
00:50:45

This week, we cover some hopeful signs amidst the economic destruction. 

First, we’ll look at the record-breaking activity in battery storage.

A coal plant in North Dakota will be replaced in part with a one-acre battery array from Form Energy that uses a new technology capable of discharging for 150 hours – that’s more than 30 times longer than lithium batteries. 

Hawaii’s electric utility just awarded contracts for 16 projects that add up to more than 3 gigawatt-hours of storage, in order to replace an oil-fired and a coal-fired power plant. 

And in California, Southern California Edison signed contracts for 770 megawatts of batteries, many paired with solar projects, to replace gas plants. That’s 200 megawatts more than the entire battery capacity installed in 2019.

Plus, in China, more hybrid wind/solar and battery plants are starting to emerge. 

This led Dan Finn-Foley, Wood Mackenzie’s head of energy storage, to declare: “The utility energy storage market is blowing through milestones faster than we can report them.”

Then, renewables are surging and coal is declining. A new IEA report says that renewable generation will increase in 2020 -- pushing higher-cost fossil resources out of the market. "In all regions that implemented lockdown measures," the IEA report said, "the electricity supply underwent a notable shift towards low-carbon energy sources." We’ll look at why.

Finally: presumptive presidential nominee Joe Biden just unveiled a new climate task force. From the Sunrise Movement to a former EPA chief, we’ll talk about who’s on it, and look at their roles. What will this task force accomplish in terms of agenda-setting and setting the political tone?

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: ‘Blowing Through Milestones’: Hawaiian Electric Picks Winners in Solar-Storage Bonanza
  • GTM: Long Duration Breakthrough? Form Energy’s First Project Tries Pushing Storage to 150 Hours
  • Bloomberg: China’s Great Energy Shift Sets Mega Hybrid Plants in Motion
  • Inside Climate News: With Planned Closing of North Dakota Coal Plant, Energy Transition Comes Home to Rural America
  • E&ENews: How Lockdowns Boost Renewables and Harm Coal
  • GTM: WoodMac: Global Solar Market Set to Resume Growth in 2021 as Coronavirus Impact Fades
  • Carbon Brief: Will China Build Hundreds of New Coal Power Plants in the 2020s?
  • Inside Climate News: Biden Names Ocasio-Cortez, Kerry to Lead His Climate Task Force, Bridging Democrats’ Divide
  • The Verge: How the Left is Trying to Fix Biden

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 22, 2020
Layoffs Surge in Clean Energy
00:55:12

This week, we look at sky-high layoffs in clean energy. How do we get people back to work? 

The first major analysis of unemployment in the clean energy sector has been released for April. According to E2 and BW Research, nearly 600,000 jobs were lost in energy efficiency, manufacturing, electric vehicles and clean power and fuels. 

We’ve seen a 17 percent drop in the green workforce since the start of the year. Those losses amount to double the employment growth in clean energy for the last three years. 

It’s likely to get worse before it gets better. How much should we worry? And what sectors will come back the fastest?

Then, what do 200 of the world’s top economic advisers think about the most effective low-carbon solutions for economic recovery?

And finally, we’ll revisit wildfires. Why can’t California utilities, especially northern giant PG&E, get it right when it comes to fire prevention? 

Recommended reading:

  • E2: Clean energy Unemployment Claims April 2020
  • NASEO & EFI: 2020 Energy & Employment Report
  • The New Republic: There are Green Jobs Hiding in the Oilfields
  • Oxford Report with Stern and Stiglitz: Will COVID-19 fiscal recovery packages accelerate or retard progress on climate change?
  • Axios: Clean energy and climate change unlikely to lead American recovery
  • PG&E: Q1 Earnings Report
  • CPUC: Draft Report 
  • CA Current: Wildfire Plans Riddled with Deficiencies
  • Judge Alsup: Order Modifying Conditions of PG&E Probation
  • GTM: Why California Residents Could See Even More Blackouts This Year
  • L.A.Times: California Faces Perilous Fire Season as Coronavirus Threatens Firefighters

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 15, 2020
Trump’s Deregulation Push + Michael Moore’s Bad-Faith Movie
01:00:38

This week: while the country is distracted by infection rates, deaths and protests, what else have we been missing?

We peek out from behind the quarantine curtain to see what the Trump administration has been up to on the energy front. 

The Trump administration has declared a national emergency over cyber threats to the power grid. Equipment vendors “where a foreign adversary has an interest” will be banned. Most transformers are built in China. Will this create uncertainty or slow grid work?

The executive branch has been busy with environmental rollbacks. The Trump administration wants to loosen as much environmental regulation as possible in the six months before the election. We look at the list.

Then, we answer your questions. We sourced nearly 200 questions from our recent live show. And we’re going to tackle some of them.

They include: Michael Moore’s bad-faith trashing of clean energy and the environmental movement; one group’s attempt to kill solar net metering nationwide; and how the current economic mess is impacting cities and corporates.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sungrow, the leading global supplier of inverter solutions for renewables. During these uncertain times, Sungrow is committed to protecting its employees and continuing to reliably serve its customers around the world. Sungrow has also leveraged its extensive network across the United States to distribute face masks to communities in need.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 08, 2020
Watt It Takes: From Self-Replicating Machines to Decarbonization
01:07:13

This week on Watt It Takes: Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Saul Griffith, the founder and chief scientist at Other Lab.

Saul Griffith has a PhD in materials science and information theory. He’s co-founded over a dozen companies. And now he’s determined to prove that we already have what it takes to decarbonize the economy.

“The reality is I think it's still possible to completely decarbonize by 2030 and save everyone money. And we just got to start thinking about it correctly,” says Saul.

Other Lab is an R&D incubator and accelerator that helps pair startups in robotics and renewable energy with government labs and corporate investors. It has partnered with NASA, the Navy, the Department of Energy, Google, Facebook, GE and Ford to help build and fund projects in energy, automation, and robotics “in service of 100% decarbonization.”

Saul co-founded Makani Wind, the high-altitude wind company acquired by Google, and the tracker company Sunfolding. He brings the grit of an entrepreneur, the rigor of a scientist, the dirty mouth of a sailor to his passionate work on climate change.

A word of warning: there is some swearing in this interview. It might not be appropriate for some young ears.

In this episode, Emily talks with Saul about the many companies he’s helped build, and how he’s taken on a new mission to convince people that we have most of what we need — right now — to decarbonize large swaths of the economy.

This conversation was recorded at the Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California, before the pandemic. Our next episode will be recorded remotely for an online audience. You find more details here

Subscribe to GTM’s newsletter to learn more about the companies we profile on this series.

This podcast is brought to you by CPower. CPower is offering a market-by-market analysis of the issues, trends, and regulations that organizations should understand in 2020 to make better decisions about energy. Get your copy today of the “2020 State of Demand-Side Energy Management in North America” here.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 30, 2020
Live From Our Homes to Yours, Literally
01:23:00

This week, we bring you a joint episode of The Energy Gang and The Interchange, recorded in front of a live audience from our quarantine quarters around the country. 

When we started making our podcasts seven years ago, it was clear that the energy transition would be a difficult one. 

Both shows were designed as a forum to grapple with tough issues in an accessible, candid way. The clean energy industry has faced its share of crises over the years — but nothing quite like the current pandemic and economic freeze.

Supply chains are in limbo, funding opportunities for startups have vanished, and once-growing companies are at a standstill. Meanwhile, political leaders are trying to get money to struggling people and businesses, setting the stage for trillions more dollars in spending on infrastructure. 

How will it all pan out? We’re trying to figure it out, just like you. 

In this episode, we take listener questions about how to use the current crisis as an opportunity. We use some thought exercises as a way to break up the gloom, and do a mental health check-in with each other. 

Listeners submitted over 120 questions. We’ll be considering them on future shows. If you have any other show topic ideas, tag The Energy Gang and The Interchange on Twitter. (And please give us a rating and review on Apple podcasts!)

This show is brought to you by CPower. Get your copy today of the 2020 State of Demand-Side Energy Management in North America at thecpowerway.com/future.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 24, 2020
Reckoning With Utilities’ Dirty Past
01:04:45

We’re doing a free live show from our homes! Sign up here to join us on Wednesday April 22nd. You can watch a behind-the-scenes recording with The Energy Gang and The Interchange.

This week: The many ways that dirty energy has controlled the politics of clean energy.

Dr. Leah Stokes, an expert on interest groups and their influence over policy, joins the gang. Her new book, Short Circuiting Policy, is the focus of our episode.

Who are the truly bad actor utilities? How have they held back climate policy, and where would we be without their resistance?

Suddenly, utilities are embracing much more ambitious carbon-free energy targets. How optimistic should we be about their intentions?

We’ll talk about the history of clean energy politics detailed in Leah’s book, which she researched over a seven-year period.

Then: the election. With Bernie Sanders out, what will his climate voters do? How long will they hold out, what influence do they have, and how will they wield it? 

Recommended reading:

  • Leah Stokes: Short Circuiting Policy
  • Washington Post: Elizabeth Warren says ‘government has been bought and paid for’ by big business. Political scientists say she’s got a point.
  • Guardian: Trump Administration Declines to Strengthen U.S. Clean Air Standards
  • L.A. Times: Exposure to Air Pollution Linked to Higher Coronavirus Death Rates
  • The Atlantic: Trump’s New Auto Rollback is an Economic Disaster
  • The Atlantic: “We Knew They Had Cooked the Books”
  • NYT: Coronavirus Does Not Slow Trump’s Regulatory Rollbacks
  • NYT: Trump’s Environmental Rollbacks Find Opposition Within: Staff Scientists
  • The Hill: Democrat questions WH transparency in rollback of bedrock env law
  • Inside Climate News: Joe Biden Must Convince Climate Voters He’s a True Believer
  • The Hill: State of the Race: Green groups press Biden after Sanders exits
  • Common Dreams: After Sanders Exits Race, Climate Campaigners Thank Him for 'Raising the Bar' and Urge Biden to 'Step Up'
  • Guardian Opinion: Dear Joe Biden, Here is how you can earn our support

This podcast is brought to you by CPower. CPower is offering a market-by-market analysis of the issues, trends, and regulations that organizations should understand in 2020 to make better decisions about energy. Get your copy today of the “2020 State of Demand-Side Energy Management in North America” here.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 18, 2020
Will Pollution Pauses Have a Lasting Impact?
00:46:20

The world is experiencing a sudden, dramatic drop in all kinds of air pollution. The skies are dramatically different. People can hear birds they didn’t even know were there, and see landscapes that have been shrouded for decades.

It’s saved thousands of lives in averted asthma and heart attacks. When this is all over, will people clamor for cleaner air? We discuss the potential long-term impacts on this week’s episode.

Then: the 2020 climate summit is postponed. Could that be a good thing? What are the political benefits and diplomatic drawbacks?

Finally, we’ll assess curtailments of solar and wind energy as electricity consumption drops around the world.

Recommended reading:

  • Clean Air Memes from India: You Can See Los Angeles from Mumbai Now
  • Reuters: Biggest fall in carbon emissions since World War Two
  • WSJ: Coronavirus Lockdowns Clear the Air But the Effect Could be Fleeting
  • Twitter: Katharine Hayhoe’s Most Recent Cool Explainer
  • Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists: Will the coronavirus have a lasting impact on carbon emissions?
  • Forbes: Why Offering “Home-Office” Balance Leads to the Most Productive Employees
  • Bloomberg: What It Means to Have a Year Without Climate Diplomacy
  • E&ENews: Pandemic Delays Global Climate Summit
  • Climate Action Tracker: How the Pledges of Each Nation Stack Up
  • GTM: California Curtailment Surge as Coronavirus Cuts Demand
  • ITWeb: Eskom’s COVID-19 power curtailment bid stuns wind sector
  • GTM: 2017 Primer–Too Much of a Good Thing? An Illustrated Guide to Solar Curtailment on California’s Grid

This podcast is brought to you by CPower. CPower is helping organizations chart a path to energy’s future. Visit thecpowerway.com/future to learn how CPower can guide your decisions on distributed generation, demand response and your energy spend.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 10, 2020
Does the Economic Crisis Shift the Clean Energy Calculus?
00:58:30

This week: The coronavirus shockwave brings staggering losses of lives, jobs, and money.

So many applied for unemployment last week – 5 times more than ever before – that it was hard for graphic artists to draw a Y-axis that would fit them in historical comparisons. We’re now at 10 million unemployment claims. 

With so much turmoil and uncertainty, we are going to dig back into some of the big themes of the week. 

First, we’ll have a recap of stimulus activity. The day after the unprecedented unemployment numbers, the federal government approved a boost to the economy twice as large as any before in the history of the United States. What’s in it? What’s coming next?

Then, essential workers in energy: how grid operators are making sure that all-important juice keeps flowing to your home or essential workplace.

And finally, how the oil price shock may – or may not – impact renewables investment from fossil fuel majors.

Mentioned on the show:

Recommended reading:

  • VOX: How the Covid-19 Recession Could Become a Depression
  • WSJ: After 3 Coronavirus Packages, Congress is Already Prepping a Fourth
  • The Hill: McCarthy Says Fourth Stimulus Might Not Be Necessary
  • Bloomberg: Winners and Losers in Congress’s $2 Trillion Rescue Plan
  • American Petroleum Institute: Open Letter to Congress and White House
  • Inside Climate News: Trump’s Move to Suspend Env. Enforcement is a Lifeline to Oil
  • E&ENews: Inside New York’s Grid Lockdown
  • DailyEnergyInsider: PJM Adapts to New Normal During Covid-19 Crisis
  • Bloomberg: US To Let Nuclear Plants Defer Repairs, Schedule Longer Shifts
  • OilPrice.com: Can Big Oil Still Fund Its Renewable Energy Push?

This podcast is brought to you by CPower. CPower is helping organizations chart a path to the energy future. Visit thecpowerway.com/future to learn how CPower can guide your decisions on distributed generation, demand response and your energy spend.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 03, 2020
Election Special: Coronavirus and Climate Collide
01:03:36

This is a special crossover episode between The Energy Gang and Climate 2020.

Coronavirus brought the 2020 election to a screeching halt. Climate was once a top issue in the Democratic primary, but it’s been overtaken by a virus and a looming economic apocalypse. 

Primaries are delayed. Traditional campaigning has stopped. Biden is hiding out, preparing for the general election. Bernie Sanders is hanging on. And the way we think about all kinds of issues has totally flipped.

So how will climate, cleantech and the environment fit into this new political world?

The climate community is struggling with how to message. What are the appropriate ways to keep the focus on climate change, while we face public health and economic crises? 

What about the intersection of extreme weather and coronavirus? Many state officials fear the next season’s floods, hurricanes and fires – events that can require evacuation while people are supposed to stay homebound. How will climate change compound the problem?

The Gang includes Stephen Lacey, Katherine Hamilton and Jigar Shah.

Jeff Nesbit, the executive director of Climate Nexus and co-host of the podcast Climate 2020, joins the gang for this special joint episode on politics. Jeff is also an author, former journalist, a senior public affairs official at the FDA, and Dan Quayle’s director of comms.

Mentioned on the show: 

Recommended:

This podcast is brought to you by CPower. CPower is helping organizations chart a path to the energy future. Visit thecpowerway.com/future to learn how CPower can guide your decisions on distributed generation, demand response and your energy spend.



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Mar 27, 2020
The Vast Potential of Networked EV Chargers [Content From Enel X]
00:12:42

This is an original, branded podcast produced in partnership with Enel X and GTM Creative Strategies.

Electric vehicle chargers now outnumber gas stations in some countries. They’re getting easier to find. They’re easier to install in homes. And they’re getting way smarter.

So how can we harness all these chargers for the benefit of the grid and consumers?

In this special podcast episode, produced in partnership with Enel X, we’re exploring the vast potential of electric vehicle chargers. We’ll talk with Giovanni Bertolino, the head of e-mobility for North America at Enel-X about a concept called managed charging. It’s also known as intelligent charging.

Giovanni’s team deploys networks of chargers that can adapt to pricing and grid needs — providing demand response services, and potentially, real-time services to manage the frequency of the grid. 

We speak with Giovanni about the rise of managed charging. We started with the underlying market conditions: the grid is getting saturated with wind and solar. So how can chargers paired with demand response help support more renewables?

Large energy users partner with Enel X to manage risk on the energy markets, maximize payments through demand response, and finance upgrades to facilities to improve demand response earnings. They also increasingly work with Enel X to use chargers to manage the grid.

Find out more about how Enel X can help you capitalize on your biggest energy opportunities.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 25, 2020
The Coronavirus Fallout
00:57:48

This week: how coronavirus could accelerate or decelerate the energy transition.

We’re facing an oil shock amid a pandemic, supply chains are still in disarray, economic gears are grinding to a near halt, and countries are scrambling to put stimulus packages in place. How will this shape the energy system?

We’re going to break the conversation into three parts: the impact on fossil fuels and renewables; long-term prospects for decarbonization; and a blueprint for a low-carbon stimulus.

Where will the money go when this is all over? Could clean energy have the advantage over fossil energy from investors and governments?

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: Could the Oil Price Collapse Drive More $$ Into Renewables
  • GTM: For Wind and Solar Sectors, Biggest Coronavirus Risk May Be a Damaged Economy
  • Business Insider: Coronavirus Stunts Clean Energy Growth
  • WSJ: Oil Markets Point to Lasting Glut of Crude
  • WSJ: Oil Drop Takes Down Hedge Fund
  • OilPrice.com: Oil Price Crash Continues Despite $1.5 Trillion Fed Intervention
  • OilPrice.com: Morgan Stanley Expects Net Zero Demand Growth in China
  • E&ENews: The Oil Crash and Climate: What to Know
  • E&ENews: Green Energy's $10T Revolution Faces Oil Crash Test
  • E&ENews: Senate GOP Eyes Energy Aid in Response to Market Fallout

This podcast is brought to you by CPower. CPower is helping organizations chart a path to energy’s future. Visit thecpowerway.com/future to learn how CPower can guide your decisions on distributed generation, demand response and your energy spend.


See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 19, 2020
Watt It Takes: Turning Real Estate Into Clean-Power Assets
01:06:40

This week on Watt It Takes: Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Robyn Beavers, the co-founder and CEO of Blueprint Power

Blueprint works with real estate companies to turn their buildings into clean energy power plants. Blueprint developed software that helps building owners optimize their use of co-generation, fuel cells, solar or batteries.

Robin has a long history in the worlds of tech, real estate and energy. She was an early employee at Google, and went on to found the company’s environmental strategy group. She later built the innovation team at NRG Energy. She later went into the world of real estate, where she oversaw venture investments at Lennar. 

Today, she’s bringing all that experience together in the hopes of making buildings more dynamic actors on the grid. 

This conversation was recorded at the Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California. 

To learn more about future speakers and attending a live event, go to Powerhouse.fund and click on the events tab. You can listen to all of the episodes of Watt It Takes here.

This podcast is brought to you by CPower. CPower is helping organizations chart a path to energy’s future. Visit thecpowerway.com/future to learn how CPower can guide your decisions on distributed generation, demand response and energy spend.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 12, 2020
We Spend Jeff Bezos’ Climate Money
00:45:24

What to do with all this climate money moving around? 

The richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos, says he is going to channel $10 billion of his own dollars into climate solutions. Is this the biggest climate philanthropy ever? And where should he be devoting those dollars? We’ll help him spend it.

Then, the mushy middle. Our own Jigar Shah’s Generate Capital has raised another billion dollars to fund climate tech that is less attractive to some investors – fuel cells, microgrids and unconventional solar projects. We’ll talk about the underserved opportunities in finance. 

And a new pot of money from ARPA-E to scale up existing technologies. It’s paltry compared to the money people like Gates and Bezos are throwing into the space. What role is the government playing to scale climate tech?  

Recommended reading:

  • EENews: He Wants to Own It. Will $10B Buy the Climate Movement?
  • The Atlantic: $10 Billion? In This climate?
  • GTM: Generate Capital’s $1B Raise Draws Global Infrastructure Funds to Cleantech
  • Green Car Congress: ARPA-E Offers Up to $50 Million for Scaleups That Have a Path


This podcast is brought to you by CPower. CPower is helping organizations chart a path to energy's future. Visit thecpowerway.com/future to learn how CPower can guide your decisions on distributed generation, demand response and your energy spend.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 05, 2020
Is BP's Shift for Real?
00:57:41

Just weeks after taking over as CEO of BP, Bernard Looney unveiled a series of climate targets. This isn’t the first time BP has tried to make a push into clean energy and decarbonization -- is this time different?

In this week’s episode, we’ll look at the pressures that BP is facing. What does it take for a publicly-owned company to reevaluate its core product? And how do you reduce the carbon intensity of a hydrocarbon business? We’ll dig through the details.

Then, natural gas is suddenly in the hot seat. For gas-only utilities, one pathway is clear. They have to push renewable methane. But what are the limitations? And how will the battle over natural gas connections play out?

Finally, we’ll talk about another reversal, this time in Virginia. The state legislature is right in the middle of setting some pretty strong goals for offshore wind and storage, and they’ve got a governor who wants to sign it. What caused the politics to turn around so suddenly?  

Recommended reading:

  • Vox: The False Promise of Renewable Natural Gas
  • GTM: Virginia Lawmakers Race to Define Clean Energy Goals, Offshore Wind Plans
  • WSJ: BP Wants to Become Carbon Neutral by 2050, But Doesn’t Say How

=This podcast is brought to you by Energetic Insurance. Energetic’s EneRate Credit Cover policy is an easy button for commercial solar — similar to a FICO score in residential solar. This enables savvy developers and investors to quickly finance commercial solar projects and turn around portfolio refinancings more rapidly. Find out more.

This podcast is brought to you by KORE Power. KORE Power is a leading manufacturer of high-density, high-voltage energy storage solutions for utility, industrial, microgrids and mission-critical markets. Find out more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 21, 2020
The State of Off-Grid Energy Access
00:57:26

This week: The cutting-edge business of bringing power to the last billion people on Earth without it. 

We’ll follow the money, the markets, the business models and ask whether distributed renewables are providing a real alternative to slow grid connections. 

Investments in off-grid power in Africa and Asia have skyrocketed in the last five years. Thirty times more money went into the sector in 2018 compared with 2013. More than $500 million dollars was invested in electrification in 2018, for the first time, an analysis by Wood Mackenzie found.

The money is finally bringing lights, cell phone charging and electric stoves to millions of people who had to rely on kerosene and wood. But is the money getting funneled to the right projects? Can they scale to meet a high-energy society? And what are the bottlenecks in international finance preventing these solutions from expanding faster?

Ben Attia joins us for a dive into the state of the market. Ben has spent years immersed in the world of solar home systems and off grid renewables in the Middle East and Africa. He leads emerging coverage of off-grid power markets for Wood MacKenzie. 

  Resources:

This podcast is brought to you by Energetic Insurance. Energetic’s EneRate Credit Cover policy is an easy button for commercial solar — similar to a FICO score in residential solar. This enables savvy developers and investors to quickly finance commercial solar projects and turn around portfolio refinancings more rapidly. Find out more.

This podcast is brought to you by KORE Power. KORE Power is a leading manufacturer of high-density, high-voltage energy storage solutions for utility, industrial, microgrids and mission-critical markets. Find out more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 14, 2020
Watt It Takes: Bringing Printable Batteries From Lab to Market
01:06:10

This week on Watt It Takes: Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Dr. Christine Ho, the co-founder and CEO of Imprint Energy.

Imprint Energy is the company created to commercialize Christine’s invention: a tiny, zinc-based solid-state battery that can be screen printed. It’s being integrated into sensors and other tiny devices across the internet-of-things.

Christine’s father was an entrepreneur. She saw the highs and lows of that life. She followed his path -- and has faced her own similar tumult. Today, Imprint is licensing its technology to multiple manufacturers, and it’s printed hundreds of thousands of batteries.

This conversation was recorded at the Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California. 

To learn more about future speakers and attending a live event, go to Powerhouse.fund and click on the events tab. Listen to all of the episodes of Watt It Takes here.

Subscribe to GTM’s newsletter to learn more about the companies we profile on this series.

This podcast is brought to you by Energetic Insurance. Energetic’s EneRate Credit Cover policy is an easy button for commercial solar — similar to a FICO score in residential solar. This enables savvy developers and investors to quickly finance commercial solar projects and turn around portfolio refinancings more rapidly. Find out more.

This podcast is brought to you by KORE Power. KORE Power is a leading manufacturer of high-density, high-voltage energy storage solutions for utility, industrial, microgrids and mission-critical markets. Find out more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 08, 2020
Arizona Public Service’s Historic Shift
00:57:32

This week: The largest utility in one of the West’s reddest states will go carbon-free by 2050. 

The power company that has poured tens of millions of dollars into electing friendly regulators and fighting renewable energy says it’s all in for zero carbon electricity — even if the exact pathway isn’t yet clear. 

Wasn’t APS investing heavily in keeping the Four Corners coal plant open longer? What happened? And how will this impact the way the utility starts planning its resource mix today? 

Then, Congressional Republicans say they’re getting serious about climate. They’ve got a new messaging bill. We’ll talk about what’s in it — or what’s not in it — and ask why they’re tackling the issue now?

Plus, plug-in hybrids versus electric cars. Honda’s CEO says he thinks plug-in hybrids will dominate for a long time. What will the electric mobility transition look like? Will we jump straight to EVs, or will hybrids be a viable interim step for some automakers? 

Resources:

  • Greentech Media: Arizona Public Service Carbon Free Power 2050
  • AZ Central: APS CEO says Company Won’t Spend on Political Campaigns 
  • Politico: House Republicans Caught Between Trump and Young Voters on CC
  • Axios: Elements of the GOP Plan
  • Inside EVs: What’s Better, A Plug-in Hybrid or a Fully Electric
  • ExtremeTech: Did Honda’s CEO Say BEVs Make No Sense? Not Exactly

This podcast is brought to you by Energetic Insurance. Energetic’s EneRate Credit Cover policy is an easy button for commercial solar — similar to a FICO score in residential solar. This enables savvy developers and investors to quickly finance commercial solar projects and turn around portfolio refinancings more rapidly. Find out more.

This podcast is brought to you by KORE Power. KORE Power is a leading manufacturer of high-density, high-voltage energy storage solutions for utility, industrial, microgrids and mission-critical markets. Find out more.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 31, 2020
Microsoft’s Carbon-Negative Gambit
00:38:55

This week: Microsoft is setting a new standard for corporate climate targets.

The technology company promised to remove all of the carbon that it’s ever put in the atmosphere -- going back to when it was founded in an Albuquerque garage in 1975. 

That includes $1 billion in carbon removal technologies and methods. Can it pull off such an ambitious plan? And will it force other corporates to follow?

Then, a landmark climate case. Twenty-one young people who sued the federal government for the right to live in a stable climate prevailed and prevailed and prevailed…until they lost. A judge agreed with their case, but said the courts weren’t the place to remedy climate change. What does it mean for future litigation?

Plus, we have a new member of the gang we’re going to meet. It’s Ingrid Lobet, our senior editor. Make sure to follow her on Twitter

Resources:

  • MIT Technology Review: Microsoft Will Invest $1B in Carbon Reduction and Removal Tech
  • Wall Street Journal: Microsoft Raises Stakes in Corporate Climate Pledge Race
  • Vox: 21 Kids Sued the Government Over Climate Change
  • AP: U.S. Courts Dismisses Suit by Youth Over Climate Change

This podcast is brought to you by Energetic Insurance. Energetic’s EneRate Credit Cover policy is an easy button for commercial solar — similar to a FICO score in residential solar. This enables savvy developers and investors to quickly finance commercial solar projects and turn around portfolio refinancings more rapidly. Find out more.

This podcast is brought to you by KORE Power. KORE Power is a leading manufacturer of high-density, high-voltage energy storage solutions for utility, industrial, microgrids and mission-critical markets. Find out more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 24, 2020
The World’s Biggest Capitalist Says Climate Is ‘Reshaping Finance’
00:49:53

The world’s largest asset manager, BlackRock, is suddenly putting sustainability and climate risk at the center of its investment strategy. 

“Investors are increasingly...recognizing that climate risk is investment risk. These questions are driving a profound reassessment of risk and asset values. And because capital markets pull future risk forward, we will see changes in capital allocation more quickly than we see changes to the climate itself,” wrote BlackRock CEO Larry Fink in his yearly investment letter.

BlackRock manages over $7 trillion in assets. This new strategy could have a wide impact on the world of finance -- and put climate risk at the top of investor considerations.

Plus, activists are targeting banks like Chase and Citibank by hitting them on the consumer finance side. We check in on the divestment movement as it gains momentum.

Then, a look at some lesser-known, but formidable greenhouse gases: refrigerants. How much a problem are they?

Finally, California looks beyond lithium-ion batteries. The state is looking to fund the next ideas in energy storage. What are those technologies and how will they be deployed?

Resources:

This podcast is brought to you by Energetic Insurance. Energetic’s EneRate Credit Cover policy is an easy button for commercial solar – similar to a FICO score in residential solar. This enables savvy developers and investors to quickly finance commercial solar projects and turn around portfolio refinancings faster. Find out more.

This podcast is brought to you by KORE Power. KORE Power is a leading manufacturer of high-density, high-voltage energy storage solutions for utility, industrial, microgrids and mission-critical markets. Find out more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 17, 2020
Will Australia's Hellish Fires Influence Climate Politics?
00:49:15

This week, a look at the bushfires in Australia — their impact to the country, to the grid, and to politics of climate.

Then, a big change could be coming to a foundational federal policy in America. Are the proposed changes to PURPA a thoughtful response to market conditions and cheap renewables, or a political play?

Finally, we learn to code. Joe Biden is the latest democrat to push the idea that laid-off miners should learn to code. Why did it spark so much derision?

Recommended reading:

  • The Atlantic: Australia Will Lose to Climate Change
  • GTM: FERC Proposal Brings New Threat to Already-Suffering PURPA Solar Markets
  • Gizmodo: Biden Tells Miners to Learn to Code


This podcast is brought to you by KORE Power. KORE Power is a leading manufacturer of high density, high voltage energy storage solutions for utility, industrial, microgrids, and mission-critical markets. Find out more

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 11, 2020
Presenting: The Deep Decarbonization Draft
00:45:37

We have some bonus listening as we close out the year!

We present one of our most popular episodes of The Interchange: The Deep Decarbonization Draft.

It's like fantasy sports for energy nerds. The premise is simple: Shayle and Stephen choose their teams of decarbonization technologies and methods, and then pit them against each other to determine who’s best at saving the planet.

Go subscribe to The Interchange anywhere you get your podcasts. It's the perfect compliment to The Energy Gang.

Happy New Year!



See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Dec 26, 2019
Reflections on the Last 10 Years, Projections for the Next 10
01:01:40

We’re closing out the decade this week with a retrospective. 

We have been doing this show since 2013. So we are going to share some of our top story lines in energy and cleantech of the last 10 years — many of which played out while we were doing this show.

We’ll start with some personal retrospectives. What was consuming us back in 2009? How did that story shake out?

Then we’ll choose the most important stories that defined the teens. Katherine will choose the top policy trend, Jigar will choose the top business trend, and Stephen will choose the top tech trend.

Finally, we’ll look ahead to 2030 and beyond. What needs to happen in policy, business, technology to “win” the decade?=

If you’re looking for more listening over the holidays, check out our year-end episode of The Interchange

Support for the Interchange comes from Schneider Electric, the leader of the digital transformation in energy management and automation. 

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Dec 23, 2019
Watt It Takes: The Founder-Engineer Turning CO2 Into Usable Stuff
00:57:09

This week on Watt It Takes: Emily Kirsch sits down with Dr. Etosha Cave, the co-founder and chief science officer of Opus 12.

Opus 12 is a team of engineers, electrochemists and materials scientists working on a technology that converts carbon dioxide into useable products. They are developing a metal catalyst that can turn CO2 into synthetic gas for fuels and ethylene for plastics.

If the tech works at commercial scale, it would be a vital solution for slashing CO2 from industrial sources. The company has brought in about $20 million in funding. 

In this interview, Etosha talks about the inspiration for the technology, which came from her love of space and desire to go to Mars.

She talks about being a founder who’s also a black woman, and how that’s influenced her relationships with other people in energy.

And she talks about where Opus 12’s tech development stands. 

To learn more about future speakers and attending a live event, go to Powerhouse.fund and click on the events tab. Listen to all of the episodes of Watt It Takes here.

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Dec 13, 2019
This Clean-Energy Tax Pro Knows Your Deepest Secrets [Special Content]
00:17:23

This is a branded podcast made in collaboration between CohnReznick Capital and GTM Creative Strategies. 

Sheslie Royster is the person that big companies turn to when making an acquisition, investing in real estate, or finding a creative way to use tax credits. She’s a tax expert, focused mostly in wind and solar.

Those deals include a lot of numbers and math, of course. But Sheslie says the math isn’t as important as it seems. It’s the interpretation of the math that matters.

“I'd say a minimal amount is math. I'd say in the deals that we have where we're discussing tax issues, the numbers play a part but it's a smaller part. It's more the theory behind what's going on behind the numbers. What does this mean? What was the intent of the law? What is the intent of the deal?”

Sheslie is a tax partner at CohnReznick. She works on some very complicated projects that require a deep level of trust and intimacy.

“It's a personal relationship. People are telling you things about themselves that sometimes their spouses don't even know. Intimate details that people just don't tell when you meet them at a cocktail party,” she says.

So how does Sheslie get people to tell her things their spouses don’t know? 

In this episode, we’ll uncover the the secrets of one of the best tax experts in the business. 

This episode was produced by GTM Creative Strategies in collaboration with CohnReznick. 

CohnReznick serves a wide range of industries, from tech to government to entertainment. It’s a leader in cutting-edge fields like renewable energy and cannabis. To learn more about how people like Sheslie can help you get the most out of your deals, visit CohnReznick

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Dec 10, 2019
Tesla's Cybertruck: Win or Fail?
00:50:23

Truck buyers are historically some of the most brand-loyal auto consumers But recent surveys suggest that loyalty is loosening.

Into the picture steps Elon Musk, who dropped the Tesla Cybertruck last month. This space-age truck concept is truly putting the shift in consumer preferences to the test. It’s also tearing a lot of opinionated people apart.

In this episode: what is the Cybertruck and where might it fit into the emerging electric truck market? And can it sway truck buyers who don't care about Tesla?

Then, there’s a major tax bill in Congress right now that would be a boon to renewables — what are its chances?

Finally, what would we do with a million dollars? We answer a listener question about how to invest with impact.

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Dec 07, 2019
New Candidates, 'Climategate' Redux, & Top Turkeys of 2019
00:51:44

This week: our pre-thanksgiving intellectual feast. It’s a four-course meal as usual.

For the hors d’oeuvres, we’re serving up something new: a roundup of the new entrants into the presidential race, and how they stack up on environmental issues.

For the side dishes, we’ll reheat some leftovers. We’ll look at the climategate debacle 10 years later.

And for the main course. What people or companies will we choose as the top turkeys of the year?

We’ll end with a little aperitif — our free electrons. 

Read along with us:

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 22, 2019
Is Big Tech Fueling the Climate Disinformation War?
01:02:56

As we reckon with the dark side of Silicon Valley’s tech giants, there’s more scrutiny into how these companies are assisting climate denial and obfuscation.

We’ll look at a few different stories:

Climate and clean energy are getting disadvantaged by Facebook and Twitter’s different policies on political ads: how do we define issue ads and political speech?

Google, Facebook and others are getting called out for their support of groups that spread extreme climate denial: How much criticism do they deserve?

And Amazon, Microsoft and Google are building the digital backbone of industries that are wrecking the planet. How should we think about their role and culpability?

In the second half of the show, we’ll discuss America’s withdraws from the Paris climate treaty. With U.S. global leadership in shambles, who’s going to fill the gap? And how could elections change things?

Finally, how California’s wildfire crisis is stoking the state’s distributed generation market. We’ll look at the business impacts.

Recommended resources:

  • Heated: Exxon Climate Ads Aren’t Political, According to Twitter
  • Vox: Watch AOC Ask Mark Zuckerberg if She Can Run Fake Green New Deal Ads
  • Guardian: Google Made Large Contributions to Climate Deniers
  • Guardian: Facebook Video Spreads Climate Denial to 5 Million Users
  • GTM: Power Shutoff Disruption ‘Resets’ California’s Residential Market
  • Jigar Shah/Timothy Hade Op-Ed: It’s Time to Evolve California’s Electrical Grid

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 15, 2019
Watt It Takes: A Tesla Veteran’s Mission to Build Long-Duration Batteries
00:59:59

This week on Watt It Takes: how a would-be priest made it his mission to spread the gospel of battery storage.

In this episode, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Mateo Jaramillo, the CEO and co-founder of Form Energy.

Form is working on a new kind of long-duration battery. And Mateo has one of the longer-duration careers in the storage industry. 

In the early 2000s, he deployed the first behind-the-meter systems in New York for demand response — seeing the grid services potential well before anyone else.

Mateo went on to start the stationary energy storage unit at Tesla, launching and building the powerwall business. He also helped launch the supercharger business.

Today, he’s working on a new electrochemical battery that could provide storage services for days, not just hours. The idea is to unlock baseload renewables.

The chemistry was spun out of work from MIT researchers. It’s being scaled by a group of engineers and entrepreneurs with deep technical experience — and like Mateo, the bumps and bruises that come from scaling an early market.

In this interview, Mateo talks about what it took to power through the early days of battery storage, when everything sale and installation was a battle. And he’ll talk about what it will take to create Form’s new storage tech to unlock even more renewable energy.

To learn more about future speakers and attending a live event, go to Powerhouse.fund and click on the events tab. 

Listen to all of the episodes of Watt It Takes here.

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 08, 2019
The Scariest Stories of the Year
00:41:32

We recorded this episode on Halloween morning. We woke up and felt like celebrating the theme of the holiday.

If you’re listening after Halloween, don’t fret. There’s still plenty of newsworthy stuff in here.

First up, we’re choosing the story from 2019 that is most worthy of its own horror movie. As a bonus, we are also choosing the genre of horror.

Then, we pick the zombie story or trend of the year that just won’t die.

And finally, the company or person that deserves a treat.

We’ll end with some bone-chilling Free Electrons.

Could you do us a favor? Take our listener survey so we can give you more relevant content: bit.ly/gtmpodcast

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Oct 31, 2019
Who’s Trying to Re-Kill the Electric Car?
01:03:09

Could you do us a favor? Take our listener survey so we can give you more relevant content: bit.ly/gtmpodcast

This week: it’s the oil industry versus the world. 

We’re examining two legal battles for oil majors playing out in states. One involves electric cars and one involves responsibility for climate change.

We’ll start first with a story from POLITICO’s Gavin Bade. Advocacy groups backed by oil companies are increasingly lobbying against utilities that are trying to support electric vehicles. Are we seeing a coming political clash between the oil industry and utility industry?

We’re joined by Gavin, who’s been tracking these emerging challenges.

Then, we are devoting our second half of the show to the legal challenges against fossil fuel companies. 

Exxon is on trial in New York and numerous other states and cities are bringing suit against oil majors. It’s got everyone paying attention to this very complicated yet riveting issue: as the science and legal arguments evolve, will big fossil fuel companies be held accountable for a warming planet?

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Oct 26, 2019
We Didn’t Start the Fire
00:51:03

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The world’s fifth-largest economy looked more like a developing country last week, as PG&E purposefully cut power to millions of people in Northern California for days.

We knew this was coming. The growing safety and financial risk of wildfires in the state mean mass power outages will become more common. But in this case, PG&E was slammed for the way it handled things.

We’ll dig into the scope, the fallout, and the solutions of California’s power shutoffs due to wildfire threats.

Then: Dyson made a big business out of selling $400 hair dryers and $500 vacuum cleaners, but it couldn’t make a high-end electric car work. We’ll talk about why Dyson wrote off its EV plans.

Finally, the Trump administration lifts a tariff exemption for bifacial solar panels. So why are these two-sided solar panels becoming so popular now?

Additional resources:

  • New York Times: Inside PG&E’s Control Room
  • Bloomberg: What Happens When a Vacuum Company Tries to Make an Electric Car
  • GTM Squared: Has Bifacial Solar Finally Moved From Theoretical to Practical?

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 19, 2019
Are Ancient Bugs the Key to Storing Wind and Solar? [Special Content From NREL]
00:29:39

This is a branded podcast made in collaboration between the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and GTM Creative Strategies. 

As grids get saturated with wind and solar electricity, there’s pressure to find new ways to store that energy across daily, monthly or seasonal variations.

Could the answer be a billion-year-old microbe?

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory and SoCalGas are currently testing a new bioreactor that could turn renewable electrons into renewable methane -- allowing excess generation to be “stored” in existing natural gas pipelines.

The system relies on an ancient microorganism that ferments hydrogen and carbon dioxide and turns it into methane. By feeding the bugs hydrogen from renewable resources and CO2 from industrial sources, companies like SoCalGas could harness a new supply of renewable natural gas.

NREL has been testing the process in the lab for years. And it finally built a larger-scale version of the bioreactor. 

We sent producer Catherine Jaffee to NREL’s lab in Golden, Colorado to check it out. We’ll learn how it works in the first part of the episode.

In the second half of the episode, we talk with NREL’s Kevin Harrison and SoCalGas’ Ron Kent about how the system is performing so far.

Learn more about all the world-changing research on clean energy happening at NREL.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Oct 15, 2019
Watt It Takes: The Startup Making Solar-Storage Better Than the African Grid
01:04:19

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This week on Watt It Takes: how a computer nerd who loved assembling electronics became obsessed with designing a solar-storage system to light up Africa.

In this episode, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Xavier Helgesen, the co-founder and chief technology officer at ZOLA Electric.

Zola is a provider of solar and storage systems in Africa. Since its founding in 2012, the company has served over a million people with clean power in five countries.

Over the years, Zola has evolved from a small, scrappy startup that offered very basic energy packages into a hardware company that installs sleek, scalable power systems that function better than the grid. 

“[Our goal] was not to be worse than the grid, but available anywhere — but to just be better than the grid. For solar and batteries to fundamentally be cheaper and more reliable than the grid. And if we succeed in that in the developing world, then the market is almost limitless,” says Helgesen.

In this interview, Helgesen talks about how he first got interested in energy access, the complexities of setting up a company as an outsider in Tanzania, and how Zola shifted into designing its own hybrid system.

This conversation was recorded live at Powerhouse’s headquarters. To learn more about future speakers and attending a live event, go to Powerhouse.fund and click on the events tab. 

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

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Oct 02, 2019
Clean Energy’s Ever-Changing Policy Risk [Special Content From CohnReznick]
00:19:36

This is a branded podcast made in collaboration between CohnReznick Capital and GTM Creative Strategies. 

Britta Von Oesen knows risk. 

As an intern in Lehman Brothers’ global energy unit in 2008, she watched the collapse of the investment bank in real time. 

Later, she watched European markets grind to a halt after feed-in-tariffs were reversed.

And in the U.S., she’s monitored the ever-changing tax policies and regulations that impact wind, solar and storage.

Today, Britta is a managing director at CohnReznick Capital. Her job is to help figure out how to get wind and solar deals done in the face of policy and financial risk. 

In this special episode, produced in collaboration with CohnReznick Capital, we sit down with Britta Von Oesen to unpack some of those policy uncertainties and what they mean for renewables.

Go to CohnReznickCapital.com to learn more about how the company builds relationships, closes deals, and helps clean energy companies excel.

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Sep 29, 2019
Turmoil at an Iconic American Hydropower Giant
00:57:58

The Bonneville Power Administration, the government-owned “power marketing agency” that serves the Pacific Northwest, is facing a strong current of problems. 

As cheap renewables make hydro less competitive in the region, BPA is now bleeding money. There’s now concern that its utility customers will stop buying hydro after contracts expire.

Meanwhile, the cost of rehabilitating salmon populations is mounting. As the power provider grapples with $15 billion in debt, some are calling for a reformation of BPA. How can the government prepare the hulking agency for the competitive clean energy future?

We’ll talk to a Jeremy P. Jacobs, a reporter for E&E’s Greenwire, who’s been digging into the story. You can read parts one, part two and part three of his ongoing series.

Then, climate strikes swept the globe last Friday, raising unprecedented media coverage. How is this different from previous mobilizations around climate? We’ll put this moment in the context of recent history.

Finally, offshore wind is getting dirt cheap in Europe. According to Carbon Brief, recent offshore wind prices are set to compete with existing gas seven years ahead of schedule. We’ll venture out to the leading edge of offshore wind development.

Read along with us:

  • E&E News: Jeremy Jacobs’ reporting on Bonneville Power Administration
  • New York Times: Climate Protesters and World Leaders on Same Planet, Different Worlds
  • GTM: UK’s Offshore Wind Auction So Successful It Might Have Made Itself Redundant
  • Carbon Brief: Record-Low Price for UK Offshore Wind Cheaper Than Existing Gas Plants by 2023

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Sep 27, 2019
Does Climate Change Make Good Political TV?
00:54:03

This week: We’ve gone from drought to flood.

People who care about climate change have spent the last three presidential election cycles cajoling, prodding and begging television news outlets to cover the issue. But the more pressure mounted, the more coverage lagged. 

Across all three debates between Clinton and Trump in 2016, environmental issues got just under 5 and a half minutes of air time. And in all of 2016, the major networks talked about climate for just 50 minutes combined.

And then suddenly in September, we got CNN’s town hall, a seven-hour extravaganza that actually allowed candidates some time to tease out the nuances of their plans.

Sure, the moderators asked some weird questions about cheeseburgers, plastic straws and electric cars. But for the most part, the conversation was substantive and helpful.

In this episode, we’re digging into a few questions: Did the town hall advance the narrative? Did it change the campaign and polling? And which candidate performed the best?

We’re joined by Dr. Leah Stokes, an assistant professor of political science at the University of California Santa Barbara, who watched and analyzed all seven hours closely.

Read Leah’s top twitter threads on the candidates:

Follow the gang on twitter: Katherine, Jigar, Stephen and The Energy Gang.

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

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Sep 17, 2019
How America Thwarted a Giant ‘Extension Cord’ for Renewables
00:54:36

America is a place where if you can dream something — no matter how big or ambitious — you can do it. 

Unless you’re trying to string 700 miles of high-voltage transmission lines to bring wind power from Oklahoma to Tennessee. 

Our guest this week is Russell Gold, author of a new book about the saga that unfolded when wind energy pioneer Michael Skelly tried just that. 

The book, “Superpower,” is all about Skelly’s attempt to build one of the most ambitious energy infrastructure projects in recent history — and how he faced nearly every obstacle imaginable. What does Skelly’s journey tell us about America’s diminishing ability to do great things?

Russell Gold is a veteran newspaper reporter who was a pulitzer prize finalist for his reporting on the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. He wrote a book in 2014 on the rise of fracking, called “The Boom.” He’ll join us to talk about the reasons why Skelly’s transmission plan failed.

Then, two top presidential candidates are calling for a ban on fracking and promising to phase out nuclear power. What would be the consequences if a democrat actually put those promises into action?

Finally: we’re digging into a piece from Jonathan Franzen in the New Yorker that got a lot of angry criticism. Should we just give up and stop pretending we can do anything about climate change?

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

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Sep 13, 2019
Watt It Takes: The Startup Reshaping Mobility Planning With Data
01:06:49

This week on Watt It Takes: How an energy researcher obsessed with electric vehicles stumbled upon a vast trove of transportation data and built a company that is reshaping infrastructure planning for mobility.

Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Laura Schewel, the founder and CEO of Streetlight Data

Laura spent her career studying storage, electric vehicles, and transportation systems at the Rocky Mountain Institute, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, and then as a research fellow at UC Berkeley. 

While at UC Berkeley, she got interested in finding a way to give electric vehicle owners more information about how they were driving their cars. She ended up uncovering a data gold mine in the process. 

Laura built a company that now processes over 100 billion data points and provides transportation and urban planners with a granular view of how roads, bike lanes and sidewalks are being used.

In this episode, Laura Schewel talks about how she ultimately pursued the idea, and what she encountered in the wild world of entrepreneurship.

This conversation was recorded live at Powerhouse’s headquarters in Oakland, California. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Sep 05, 2019
The Problem With Carbon Offsets
00:52:23

With flight shame growing in popularity, extreme weather intensifying, and the Amazon burning, there’s more demand than ever for carbon offsets to assuage our guilt and make us feel like we’re doing something.

But those credits many not be doing what you think they are — or anything at all.

This week, we’re discussing the complicated and frustrating world of carbon offsets. There’s a reason why even the United Nations is now calling out their limitations. 

This conversation is particularly important as California considers joining the Tropical Forest Standard as part of its cap-and-trade program.

Then, we’ll talk about new climate plans from Bernie Sanders and Andrew Yang. What’s in them? And who will become the climate candidate?

Finally, we dig into a bill from Ohio that bails out big utilities and guts clean energy. The politics of this thing are ugly — and they are only getting uglier.

Read along with us:

  • ProPublica: An Even More Inconvenient Truth
  • Bloomberg: Greta Thunberg and ‘Flight Shame’ Are Fueling a Carbon Offset Boom
  • New York Times: Bernie Sanders' Green New Deal
  • Vox: Ohio Just Passed the Worst Energy Bill of the 21st Century

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Aug 30, 2019
The New Normal for the Grid: Batteries
00:43:57

In nearly every corner of the country, energy storage projects are finding their way onto the grid — they’re getting bigger, cheaper, more diverse, and even a little bit weirder. 

Most of all, they’re just becoming normal.

This week, we’re talking about the new normal for power operations. It includes a lot of batteries. And maybe some air tanks, water pumps and cranes too.

GTM Staff Writer Julian Spector joins us as a guest co-host to round up the most topical projects and tell us where the storage market is headed.

Then we’ll look at a novel approach to long-duration storage: a gravity-based system from Energy Vault that just got a major injection of Japanese venture dollars. How skeptical should we be?

And finally, we’ll look at all the other alternatives to lithium-ion that are vying for traction in the market. Will pumped hydro see a revival? Can flow batteries finally prove themselves?

Read Julian Spector’s reporting here. And sign up for the GTM newsletter here

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 23, 2019
How Electric Cars and Renewables Could Beat Oil
00:48:23

Solar and wind sent European utilities into financial disarray, and U.S. utilities are facing a similar fate. Are global oil companies next?

A new report from one of the world’s biggest banks, BNP Paribas, says that solar and wind paired with electric cars provide up to 7 times more useful energy for mobility than gasoline dollar for dollar. And that economic reality could hit oil companies sooner than they think.

“The oil industry has never before in its history faced the kind of threat that renewable electricity in tandem with EVs poses to its business model,” concludes the report.

This week, we’ll dig into the findings. How does it square with current projections for EV growth and oil demand? 

Then, a regulatory surprise from the Trump Administration is delaying an 800-megawatt offshore wind project. It could also hurt other projects planned for the East Coast. Is this a careful step, or a cynical political move from a hostile White House?

Finally, 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg is on her way to the U.S. — and she’s come under fire from the conservative media. We’ll look at the strange reaction to her rise and influence.

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Aug 16, 2019
Watt It Takes: Nest Co-Founder Matt Rogers
01:05:41

This week on Watt It Takes: How a former Apple engineer applied design principles from the iPod and the iPad to smart thermostats — jolting an industry badly in need of change.

Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Matt Rogers, the co-founder and former chief product officer of Nest.

Nest is best known for its elegant learning thermostat, the first major breakout hit in the smart home space. Google later acquired the company for $3.2 billion. 

In this interview, Rogers talks about his Apple influence, how he and co-founder Tony Fadell initially got obsessed with the connected home, and how Nest fit into the Google structure. 

Before Nest launched, “the connected home wasn’t really a thing. It was a bunch of hackers stringing things together, there were no products to speak of, really,” says Rogers. “And I was like ‘this is a huge opportunity, we can go and make great products like we did at Apple.’”

This conversation was recorded live at Powerhouse’s headquarters in Oakland, California. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1,500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Aug 02, 2019
Why Is Trump Suddenly Talking About the Environment?
00:48:22

Note: after this episode, we will be on hiatus for a few weeks while Stephen Lacey goes on paternity leave. We’ll be back soon!

On July 8, Donald Trump stood in the East Room of the White House and delivered a speech on his “environmental leadership.” What could he possibly talk about?

Onlookers called the speech “Orwellian.” The Trump Administration has tried to pull America out of a global climate agreement, sent officials to try to sell coal at the latest UN climate summit, forced climate scientists out of the government, and rolled back 83 environmental rules.

So why is Trump talking about the environment now? What does it tell us about how voters feel about the issue going into the election? We’ll look at the possible political reasons for the timing of the speech.

Then, we’ll look at New York’s big climate law. How does the state plan to cut emissions 85 percent by 2050? And how will ambitious policy in California and New York influence other states?

Finally, we tackle the seasonal debate over air conditioning. As the world gets hotter, AC use is exploding around the world. How do we cool the world without baking the climate?

Recommended reading:

  • New York Times: Trump Saw Opportunity in Speech on Environment. Critics Saw a ‘“1984” Moment.’
  • Vox: New York Just Passed the Most Ambitious Climate Target in the Country
  • New York Times: Do Americans Need Air-Conditioning?
  • Bloomberg: Air Conditioning Is the World's Next Big Threat

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 14, 2019
Greening the Cannabis Industry [Special Content From CohnReznick]
00:20:44

This week, we present a special episode produced on behalf of CohnReznick.

There’s a bonanza sweeping across North America: cannabis.

As more states legalize marijuana, the industry is attracting high-profile investors and bringing in $6.5 billion in yearly sales. 

But it also faces two major challenges: limited access to banking and high energy costs.

Because cannabis is still illegal at the federal level, traditional banks are unwilling to do business with the thousands of companies serving the market. 

At the same time, the industry now eats up $6 billion in electricity costs. Growers are paying tens of thousands of dollars per month to power cultivation sites, and some utilities are worried about strain on the grid in certain locations.

Trying to slash that electricity use is very hard for cash-only companies that can’t get access to traditional financing.

“The capital you would most typically have to deploy if you wanted to site solar at a cultivation facility will end up being very expensive because you don’t have access to traditional bank financing,” explains Mark Hooley, a managing partner at CohnReznick.

In this episode, we talk with Mark about the intersection of cannabis and renewable energy. What will it take to green up America’s newest cash crop?

Learn more about CohnReznick’s cannabis practice

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 09, 2019
The Trump-Branded Version of the Clean Power Plan
00:44:01

This week: we examine the Trump alternative to the Clean Power Plan, look at the gap between red and blue states on climate change, and review the presidential debates.

Up first: how Trump's EPA is replacing Obama's major climate rule.

Then, the red-blue climate divide. States are putting ambitious new climate plans in place. But they’re almost all in states dominated by democrats -- and the new EPA power plant rule only makes that gap bigger. What are the long-term economic consequences for the red states failing to change?

Finally, we got 15 minutes of climate talk in the first two Democratic presidential debates. Does this yet again prove why we need a climate-only debate?

Recommended reading:

Support for this podcast is brought to you by Sungrow. With the world’s most powerful 250-kilowatt, 1500-volt string inverter, Sungrow is providing disruptive technology for utility-scale projects.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 02, 2019
Watt It Takes: Creating a Battery Unicorn
00:58:20

This week on Watt It Takes: How a Ukrainian immigrant quietly toiled away on a new battery chemistry and created a billion-dollar unicorn.

Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Gene Berdichevsky, the CEO of Sila Nanotechnologies.

Sila is developing a new lithium-ion battery chemistry that uses silicon in place of graphite — leading to an improvement in battery density by 20 percent. This spring, Daimler led a $170 million round in Sila, valuing the startup at $1 billion.

Berdichevsky was the seventh employee at Tesla, where he developed the Roadster’s battery.

For the last eight years, Berdichevsky’s team at Sila has been working on a drop-in replacement for today’s lithium-ion batteries.

This conversation was recorded live at Powerhouse’s headquarters. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

We're also sponsored by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jun 23, 2019
Will Geothermal Ever Boom Like Fracking?
00:38:38

It’s been a decade since the fracking boom reshaped U.S. energy markets — so when will we ever use our drilling prowess to create a similar geothermal boom?

That’s the hope. The Department of Energy just released a massive new report revisiting America’s geothermal potential in conventional hydrothermal, enhanced geothermal, direct use and heat pumps. 

And the potential is enormous — but it’s just sitting there, largely untapped. We’re going to open up DOE’s report and see which borehole it takes us down.

Then, the Biden and Warren campaigns both unveiled their energy and climate plans. Have they risen to the political and environmental stakes?

Finally, are states squandering billions in settlement dollars from the VW diesel scandal?

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

We're also sponsored by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsStitcherSpotify or wherever you find your audio content, or integrate our RSS feed into the app of your choice.

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Jun 13, 2019
Comparing Presidential Candidates on Climate and Cleantech
00:39:30

It may be a couple election cycles late, but we’re finally getting a wave of climate plans from presidential candidates. The issue is now front and center in the Democratic primaries.

We’ve spent the last week collecting the plans from leading candidates, surveying the stances of the rest of the field, and monitoring the reactions. We’ll sort through them in this week’s Energy Gang episode. 

In the first half of the show, we’ll compare and contrast the unique plans from Elizabeth Warren, Jay Inslee, Beto O’Rourke, Michael Bennet and John Delaney. What is unique about each candidate’s proposal?

Then, we’ll tackle the rest of the field in the second half of the episode. Most of them are either using the Green New Deal as a fallback, or using it as a foil. We will take an account of how that short-but-influential congressional resolution — and the activism behind it — is having an impact on the presidential campaign.

Recommended reading:

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

We're also sponsored by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsStitcherSpotify or wherever you find your audio content, or integrate our RSS feed into the app of your choice.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jun 03, 2019
Breaking Down Global Subsidies for Fossil Fuels
00:56:51

A new report from the International Monetary Fund shows that the world spent $5.2 trillion on fossil fuel subsidies in 2017. That’s half a trillion dollars more than in 2015.

But it also shows that fossil fuel subsidy spending is down by half since 2012. What gives? How much are we actually spending to make fossil fuels cheaper?

We’ll clarify the different ways economists are measuring that spending.

Then, U.S. tax subsidies for solar and wind are set to ramp downward as part of a deal struck in 2015. But some are calling for an extension of those credits once again. 

Wait, didn’t the industry say it would be just fine without them? We’ll look at arguments for and against another extension.

Finally, PG&E is warning California customers about planned blackouts during this year’s fire seasons. Does this open up a new opportunity for commercial microgrids and residential battery backup?

Recommended reading:

  • Atlantic: The Hidden Subsidy of Fossil Fuels
  • GTM: US Solar Industry Braces for ITC Stepdown While Making the Case for Another Extension
  • Bloomberg: Democrats Try to Extend Wind, Solar Aid They Agreed to Let Die
  • SF Chronicle: Fire Danger Could Force SF Blackout, PG&E Says

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

We're also sponsored by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsStitcherSpotify or wherever you find your audio content, or integrate our RSS feed into the app of your choice.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 23, 2019
America Has 2 Million Solar Systems. How'd We Get Here?
00:51:36

It took four decades for America to install a million solar systems. And it took just three years to install the second million.

From here on out, the U.S. market will likely see a million systems every couple of years, according to the latest data from Wood Mackenzie.

To mark this new era of scale, we’re going to look back at the most important trends that got us to the first couple of million systems — and the most important trends that will keep many more millions coming.

Then, Tesla has a new way to package and sell solar online. Will it work?

Finally, what’s the best way to frame climate change and the clean energy transition? Presidential candidates are talking about the issues, and press outlets are trying to reframe coverage. What's working and what needs to change?

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: US Surpasses 2 Million Solar Installations as Industry Looks to ‘Dominate’ the 2020s
  • GTM: Tesla Embraces New Solar Strategy But Analysts Remain Skeptical
  • New York Times: These Days, It’s Not About the Polar Bears
  • Columbia Journalism Review: The Climate Crisis Is a Story for Every Beat

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

We're also sponsored by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsStitcherSpotify or wherever you find your audio content, or integrate our RSS feed into the app of your choice.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 16, 2019
How Much Do Renewable Energy Mandates Really Cost?
00:46:06

For well over a decade, researchers have been modeling the cost of state renewable energy mandates.

The results break down in predictable ways: conservative and progressive groups often come to very different conclusions based about costs and benefits.

An authoritative 2015 report from the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab found that compliance costs for state renewables targets only make up 2 percent of retail rates in most U.S. states.

After a lull, the debate over the cost of renewable energy targets is re-emerging. A new working paper from economists at the University of Chicago concludes that mandates are the most expensive way to reduce carbon pollution — and that they are much bigger drivers of rate increases than previously thought.

Many researchers are pushing back on the economists’ modeling of electricity rates. But it’s worth revisiting this debate, since renewables and carbon-free energy targets are used as placeholders for more ambitious climate policy.

In this week’s podcast, we’re discussing the findings of this study, the criticism, and how it fits into current trends U.S. in energy policy.

Then, Rivian continues to bring in money for electric trucks. What do Amazon and Ford see in the company? Are trucks the next big target for electrification?

Finally, a brief look at 5G networks. They could revolutionize energy services, but they’re also fraught with geopolitical and cybersecurity risk. Will the benefits outweigh the risk?

Recommended reading:

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

We're also sponsored by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to The Interchange podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsStitcherSpotify or wherever you find your audio content. Or integrate our RSS feed into the app of your choice.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 03, 2019
Watt It Takes: Why This Founder Dug Into Home Geothermal
00:32:52

This week on Watt It Takes: How a product manager at Google saw promise in geothermal heat pumps — and applied the lessons of solar to an underserved market.

In this episode, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Kathy Hannun, the co-founder of Dandelion, a home geothermal company that uses a proprietary drilling technique, simple product design, and financing to cut the cost of ground-source heating and cooling.

For seven years, Kathy was on the rapid evaluation team at Alphabet X — formerly Google X — evaluating technology moonshots. That’s where she stumbled upon the opportunity in geothermal.

We’re going to hear from Kathy about what she learned trying to tackle a tough tech like home geothermal. We’ll also hear about what she learned from her time at Google, how she built her team, and why raising money as an expecting mother presented some unique challenges. 

This conversation was recorded live at Powerhouse’s headquarters. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

We're also sponsored by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 24, 2019
The Art of Closing Billions in Wind and Solar Deals [Special Content From CohnReznick]
00:22:08

This week, we present a special episode produced in collaboration with CohnReznick Capital.

How do you broker billions of dollars worth of renewable energy deals — and do it again and again?

It takes grit, sure. But it also requires empathy.

And that, says Conor McKenna, is the real art of the deal.

McKenna is a senior managing director at CohnReznick Capital Markets. He’s helped close 8 gigawatts of wind, solar and biomass projects over his career.

We all know “The Art of the Deal,” Donald Trump’s 1987 book that offers hard-nosed business advice. The book includes lessons like fight back, play the game hard, and deliver the goods. 

This advice has shaped our perception of real estate and Wall Street culture. But McKenna says one important lesson is missing: how to form good relationships so that everyone benefits from a deal.

“Every time we’ve seen someone focus on getting that last dollar out of an individual transaction, we’ve found that they’ve had a much harder time in repeating business and growing and scaling at the same rate as this industry.”

This isn’t a soft tactic. When you’re trying to pull together hundreds or thousands of megawatts of projects — and repeat the process over many times — you have to actually care about the people on the other side of the table.

“Those that have left money on the table and and allowed for their partners to feel successful as well, have had a lot more repeat business.”

In this episode, we look at how empathy can translate into billions of dollars in cash and push renewables further into the mainstream. Find out more about CohnReznick Capital's portfolio.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 23, 2019
Amazon Cozies Up to Fossil Fuels
00:39:51

The tech giants are all going long on renewables, but Amazon seems to be going long on oil and gas.

A new story details Amazon’s budding romance with the fossil fuel industry, while also lagging behind its peers in buying clean energy for its operations.

Other tech companies are using their analytics for helping extract more fossil fuels — but is the extent of Amazon’s pursuit unique?

Then, a new study shows that three-quarters of all coal in the US is more expensive than new renewables. But there’s an ongoing push in states from coal groups to force plants to stay open. We’ll have the latest in the feeble attempt to save coal.

Finally, the supreme court rejects a challenge to state nuclear subsidies. Is it a green light for more states to save their nuke fleets?

Recommended reading:

  • Gizmodo: Amazon Is Aggressively Pursuing Big Oil as It Stalls Out on Clean Energy
  • Vox: Amazon Says It’s a Leader on Fighting Climate Change. 5,000 Employees Disagree
  • Indy Star: Out-of-State Coal Interests Are Funding a Battle to Keep Coal Plants From Closing
  • Houston Chronicle: Supreme Court Denies Challenge to NY Nuclear Subsidy

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 18, 2019
Interpreting GOP Responses to the Green New Deal
00:42:08

This week, the Green New Deal ripples through Washington.

A few leading Republicans are responding to the progressive climate plan with some ideas of their own: the New Manhattan Project and the Green Real Deal. 

They’ve gotten a mostly cold response from the left. But have we finally broken the ice for a legitimate cross-party policy discussion on climate? We’ll look at the GOP responses.

Then, Trump’s latest verbal convulsion. Speaking at a fundraiser, the president said wind noise causes cancer and kills property values. We’ll take this opportunity to review what the literature says about the impact of wind.

Finally, we’ll go to Virginia, where there’s been a ton of legislative activity on solar, efficiency, grid infrastructure and climate — some of which was blocked by the state’s mega-utility Dominion Energy. We’ll examine the politics.

Recommended reading:

Support for this podcast comes from PG&E. Did you know that 20 percent of EV drivers in the U.S. are in PG&E’s service area in Northern California? PG&E is helping to electrify corporate fleet vehicles. Get in touch with PG&E’s EV specialists to find out how you can take your transportation fleet electric.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 12, 2019
Live at MIT: The 2040 Grid
00:46:29

This past week, we recorded a live show at the MIT Energy Conference. 

The theme of the show: what the grid may look like by 2040.

As a topical show, we usually don’t know what we’re going to be discussing until a day or two in advance. But the theme of the MIT conference was "tough tech and the 2040 grid" — so we decided to take it head on. 

To start, we’ll adjust our brains to the 2040 timeframe with some fantastical scenarios.

Then, we create our own plans. We will each outline a possible future for the 2040 time frame — Katherine will look at policy and politics, Jigar will look at the business environment, and Stephen looks at technology make-up. 

Finally, a news circuit. We’ll provide some quick commentary on top stories of the day.

And we’ll end with our Free Electrons. 

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 07, 2019
What Does Lyft's IPO Signal for the Future of Mobility?
01:03:13

Lyft is set for an IPO on Friday; Uber is driving up to the IPO window soon. Investors seem enthusiastic, but skeptics see a lot of risks and a bumpy path to profitability.

In 2018, transportation network companies — pretty much Lyft and Uber — gave 2.6 billion rides. Lyft gave a billion of those rides, doubling its revenue over 2017 to $2.2 billion.

We know the consumer appetite is there. But as Lyft hits the public markets, many wonder if that volume can be turned into profits. Autonomous cars, competition from other shared mobility companies, and regulations are all a potential risk.

So what does Lyft’s IPO — and soon Uber’s — tell us about where mobility is headed? We're discussing on this week's Energy Gang podcast.

Then, one of America’s biggest utilities said recently it will offer only carbon-free energy by 2050. In the second half of the show, we’re going to dig into Xcel’s plan. How will they do it? And will it encourage other big power companies to do the same?

Finally, Midwestern floods have caused $3 billion in damages and devastated rural communities. We’ll look at our poor infrastructure management, and where the floods fit into climate trends.

Recommended reading:

  • Seattle Times: As It Gets Set for IPO, Lyft Outlines All the Reasons Ride-Sharing Could Fail
  • NPR: Ride-Hailing Services Add To Traffic Congestion, Study Says
  • CityLab: If Your Car Is Stuck in Traffic, It's Not Uber and Lyft's Fault
  • Vox: For the First Time, a Major US Utility Has Committed to 100% Clean Energy
  • Xcel Energy: Building a Carbon-Free Future
  • Atlantic: Midwestern Flooding Isn’t a Natural Disaster
  • Report: Climate Change in the Midwest

Support for this podcast comes from Dandelion Energy, the leading home geothermal company. Dandelion is making it easier for homeowners to get geothermal. Customers who switch to geothermal heating save on average $2,250 per year. See if your home qualifies.

We're also brought to you by Wunder Capital. Listen to our careers episode produced with Wunder Capital. We talked with Wunder CTO Dave Riess about the framework he used to completely change his career path into solar — eventually co-founding a successful company. Listen to that episode in The Interchange feed or find it here.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 28, 2019
Replay: The Story Behind Greentech Media's Founding
00:53:44

We're on spring break this week. We'll be back on Thursday with our regular show.

To get you through the next few days, we’re offering up an earlier episode of Watt It Takes about the origin story of Greentech Media.

In this edition of Watt It Takes, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch interviews GTM Co-Founder Scott Clavenna about the beginning of the company, the challenges of being a startup in the cleantech world, and our recent acquisition by Wood Mackenzie. 

Watt It Takes is a live interview series produced by Powerhouse in partnership with GTM. The conversation was recorded live in Oakland, California.

Don't forget to subscribe to our other GTM podcast, The Interchange.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 24, 2019
The Battery Storage Market Kicks Into High Gear
00:55:51

The latest numbers for U.S. energy storage activity are out. They show a surge of activity coming over the next five years, leading to 6x market growth.

By 2024, the storage market will be worth $4.7 billion dollars, driven evenly by utility-scale and behind-the-meter battery projects.

On this week's episode, we'll unpack the numbers in the latest Energy Storage Monitor from Wood Mackenzie and the Energy Storage Association. They show a doubling and then a tripling of storage to come — making batteries an important part of utility planning in every region of the country.

Where’s growth happening, and what does it mean for grid planning?

Then, with many farmers in crisis, more of them are putting solar on their land. That’s providing new sources of income, but many fear it could take prime croplands out of commission. How do we site solar on agricultural lands properly?

And finally, what is going on over at Tesla? We’ll make try to make sense of the confusing series of decisions at the company.

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: US Energy Storage Broke Records in 2018, but the Best Is Yet to Come
  • GTM: APS Plans to Add Nearly 1GW of New Battery Storage and Solar Resources by 2025
  • Washington Post: The Next Money Crop for Farmers
  • Interchange podcast: What's Up With Tesla Energy?
  • New York Times: Tesla Says Never Mind, It Raises Prices and Keeps Most Stores
  • Bloomberg: Musk Pledges Belt-Tightening as Tesla Cuts Prices, Warns of Loss

Support for this podcast comes from Dandelion Energy, the leading home geothermal company. Dandelion is making it easier for homeowners to get geothermal. Customers who switch to geothermal heating save on average $2,250 per year. See if your home qualifies.

We're also brought to you by Wunder Capital. Listen to our careers episode produced with Wunder Capital. We talked with Wunder CTO Dave Riess about the framework he used to completely change his career path into solar — eventually co-founding a successful company. Listen to that episode in The Interchange feed or find it here.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 14, 2019
Watt It Takes: Terry Jester Brings 40 Years of Solar Experience to Startups
00:49:48

This week on Watt It Takes: Terry Jester has seen it all in her four-decade career in solar and electronics. As both an engineer and an executive, she’s learned that timing is everything in the energy business. 

“I think as I’ve gotten older, I understand when best to strike…a good idea can not make it for bad timing, and a bad idea can go too far.”

In this episode, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sits down with Terry, who is now chief executive of SolPad, maker of a modular home solar-storage system. 

Terry started her career at ARCO solar in 1979, where she worked on making products that could last decades. She’s since held operations or engineering positions at Shell, Siemens, SunPower, SolarWorld and Solaria — witnessing the initial evolution and eventual explosion of solar firsthand.

Terry is now in the startup world, where she’s trying to help SolPad carve out a niche in the market for home solar-battery systems. So we’re going to hear about how she’s applying operations lessons from big corporations to a startup.

This conversation was recorded live at the Women of Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy forum in Denver, CO. 

Watt It Takes is a collaboration between Powerhouse and Greentech Media. The series is normally recorded in front of a live audience at Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

Support for this podcast comes from Dandelion Energy, the leading home geothermal company. Dandelion is making it easier for homeowners to get geothermal. Customers who switch to geothermal heating save on average $2,250 per year. See if your home qualifies.

We're also brought to you by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 06, 2019
Risks and Rewards of Latin America's Solar Boom [Special Content From NEXTracker]
00:24:37

This week, we’ve got a bonus episode produced in collaboration with NEXTracker.

It’s all about the risks and rewards of doing business in the roaring Latin American solar market.

We are speaking with two of the most in-the-know people on the subject.

We’re joined by Manan Parikh, Wood a solar analyst focused on the Americas for Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables. 

And we’ll hear from Alejo Lopez, a senior director at NEXTracker, who’s helped grow a 3-gigawatt pipeline of trackers in Latin America — resulting in some of the cheapest and grandest solar projects in the world. 

Auctions in Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Colombia, and Brazil are unleashing extremely low prices — between 2 and 3 cents a kilowatt-hour. As a result, the region is actually the strongest for trackers compared to the rest of the world.

It’s also a pretty crazy place to do business. Every country is very different. Political and economic volatility can make markets super hot one year, and then nonexistent the next. And ultra-low prices aren’t always healthy.

Still, Wood Mackenzie Power & Renewables projects exponential growth for Latin America — making it 10% of the global market within the next few years.

So what does exponential growth look like? And what do solar markets based on unsubsidized, extremely low priced projects mean for businesses? 

Learn about how NEXTracker helped deliver 754 megawatts of trackers to the largest solar project in the Americas. 

Listen to our episode of Watt It Takes with NEXTracker CEO Dan Shugar, a solar pioneer.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 05, 2019
Is Climate Delayism the New Denialism?
00:43:09

We weren’t planning on making the Green New Deal a weekly item on the show. Then a video of Senator Dianne Feinstein dropped over the weekend, where she appears to lecture climate-protesting kids. It set off a chain reaction of outrage.

The social media fervor has since died down, but some really interesting journalism was left in its wake. This whole affair highlighted the crazy upheaval in climate politics — we’re going to tackle some of the bigger questions raised. 

Are kids a legitimate constituency? What makes climate politics so different from other issues? Are climate delayers as bad as climate deniers? What’s the end game for Democrats?

Then, another ethics conflict for Trump’s energy people. We’ll talk about an EPA official who worked with a secretive utility group that lobbies against air pollution regulations, just months before he took a role regulating air pollution. 

Zack Colman of Politico joins us to talk about the ties he uncovered. What do they tell us about the state of lobbying ethics and utility power in the nation’s capital?

Don’t forget about our live show on April 4 at the MIT Energy Conference in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Listeners get 10% off using the code “energygang” when they buy a ticket. Get tickets: bit.ly/mitenergygang

Read along with us:

  • The New Yorker: The Hard Lessons of Dianne Feinstein’s Encounter With the Young Green New Deal Activists
  • Axios: Dianne Feinstein's Green New Deal Video Basically Explains the Debate on Fighting Climate Change
  • Atlantic: Dianne Feinstein Doesn’t Need a Do-Over
  • Politico: Documents Detail Multimillion-Dollar ties Involving EPA Official, Secretive Industry Group


Support for this podcast comes from Dandelion Energy, the leading home geothermal company. Dandelion is making it easier for homeowners to get geothermal. Customers who switch to geothermal heating save on average $2,250 per year. See if your home qualifies.

We're also brought to you by Wunder Capital. Listen to our careers episode produced with Wunder Capital. We talked with Wunder CTO Dave Riess about the framework he used to completely change his career path into solar — eventually co-founding a successful company. Listen to that episode in The Interchange feed or find it here.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 28, 2019
How Trump's Tariffs Hit US Solar, One Year On
00:55:19

It’s been one year since the Trump White House slapped 30 percent tariffs on solar cells and modules imported into the US. What happened since?

The solar industry said tariffs would destroy tens of thousands of jobs and set the market back years. Turns out, the market is a lot more resilient than presumed. We now have the jobs numbers and installation data for 2018 — and yes, the tariffs definitely hurt solar, but not nearly as much as expected.

We’ll take stock of how tariffs shaped America’s solar market over the last year, both bad and good.

Then, Shell continues its distributed-energy acquisition spree. The oil giant just scooped up German battery services company sonnen — one month after buying EV charging firm Greenlots in January. What’s the end game?

We’ll end with a Trump Administration plan to freeze lighting standards. Is this Trump’s vendetta against hipster bars using globe lights and Edison bulbs?

We’re doing a live show at the MIT Energy Conference on April 4 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Follow this link and use the promo code “energygang,” and we’ll give you a 10% discount on your ticket. Come join us for a fun live show on the energy picture in 2040.

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: New Tariffs to Curb US Solar Installations by 11% Through 2022
  • GTM: US Solar Job Numbers Decline for the Second Consecutive Year
  • GTM: Oil Supermajor Shell Acquires Sonnen for Home Battery Expansion
  • ACEEE: Rollback of Light Bulb Standards Would Cost Consumers Billions

Support for this podcast comes from Dandelion Energy, the leading home geothermal company. Dandelion is making it easier for homeowners to get geothermal. Customers who switch to geothermal heating save on average $2,250 per year. See if your home qualifies.

We're also brought to you by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Listen to our special podcast episode on careers produced in partnership with Wunder.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 21, 2019
Parsing the Green New Deal
00:59:02

The Green New Deal plan is out, and we’re suddenly having a national conversation about climate change again. It’s also injecting some early drama into the presidential primaries.

This week, we’re digging into the plan. We’ll tell you what’s in it, assess the reactions, and look at whether it will amount to anything. Also: is the democratic-socialist agenda antithetical the “creating climate wealth” framing — or complimentary?

Then, recycling is in crisis. You’re probably recycling wrong. China is cracking down. And your city is probably losing money. We’ll ask how to address it.

Finally, lab-grown meat and meat alternatives are facing a backlash from the meat industry. Bills are getting introduced in states around the country to prevent companies from using the word "meat." Could it set the industry back just as these products are gaining traction?

We’re doing a live show at the MIT Energy Conference on April 4 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Follow this link and use the promo code “energygang,” and we’ll give you a 10% discount on your ticket. Come join us for a fun live show on the energy picture in 2040.

Recommended reading:

Support for this podcast comes from Dandelion Energy, the leading home geothermal company. Dandelion is making it easier for homeowners to get geothermal. Customers who switch to geothermal heating save on average $2,250 per year. See if your home qualifies.

We're also brought to you by Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 14, 2019
Watt It Takes: How David Crane Jolted the Power Sector
01:17:09

This week on Watt It Takes: How David Crane worked his way up in the power business to become CEO of NRG Energy — only to get tossed out of the job for his bold stance on climate.

In this episode, Emily Kirsch talks with Crane about taking risks in the conservative power industry. 

We’re going to hear from Crane about why being a CEO is so lonely, how his open exit letter to NRG employees went viral, the best investment he ever made, and his early career.

Watt It Takes is a collaboration between Powerhouse and Greentech Media. The series is recorded in front of a live audience at Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

Subscribe to GTM podcasts via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 08, 2019
The Interchange: Utilities vs Oil Majors vs Mobility Providers vs Big Tech
00:44:53

This week: a battle Royale for energy dominance.

We're cross-posting an episode from our other Greentech Media podcast, The Interchange.

The competitors: utilities, oil & gas majors, mobility providers and big tech. We’re pitting them against each other inside of a voice-activated, electrified cage to see who will emerge as the energy company of the future.

Subscribe to The Interchange podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsStitcherSpotify or wherever you find your audio content. Or integrate our RSS feed into the app of your choice.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 05, 2019
The Debate Over America's 2050 Energy Mix
00:49:59

What will the U.S. grid mix look like in 2050? It depends on which models you follow.

The future according to the Energy Information Administration's latest report: wind will stop growing, coal will stop declining, demand for electricity will keep going up, and emission reductions will moderate. A lot of people are unhappy about it.

It's no secret that EIA is ultra-conservative in its modeling. But why is there such a disconnect from the technological and economic shifts in energy markets? And why does EIA have such a hard time mapping technological change? We'll offer some solutions to the government's data problem.

Then: cancel your trip to Disneyland, stock up on Coca-Cola, and hoard as many iPhones as possible. We'll look at how the world’s biggest companies are detailing their risks to climate change.

Finally, we'll end on a philosophical note: who is to blame for climate change? Individuals? Companies? Governments? We'll take a cue from an articulate 16-year-old in Davos.

Don't forget to rate and review us on Apple podcasts. We're giving away a free subscription to GTM Squared to the person who writes the most interesting review by February 1.

Read along with us:

  • InsideClimate News: What the Government Misses in Its Energy Outlook and Why It Matters
  • Utility Dive: US Far Off Track for Global Climate Goals as Fossil Fuel Reliance Persists
  • Twitter: Jesse Jenkins thread on EIA data
  • Twitter: Alex Gilbert reactions to EIA data
  • Bloomberg: Corporate America Is Getting Ready to Monetize Climate Change
  • Barron's: Climate Change Could Hit These Companies Hardest
  • LinkedIn: Discussion of Greta Thunberg's Davos Speech

Support for this podcast comes from Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.



See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 31, 2019
A New Paradigm for Energy Efficiency
00:46:14

What is energy efficiency? That sounds like a pretty simple question. But it’s not.

Defining efficiency used to be pretty straightforward: weatherize, upgrade equipment and lighting, use a bit of social science to cut consumption. But now efficiency is becoming just as much about shaping demand in real-time to support distributed energy. And that’s shaping how it gets defined, implemented and tracked.

A confluence of factors — the rise of new consumer tech in the home, bundled distributed energy offerings, a shifting demand curve due to PV, improvements to data collection, and the “electrify everything movement — are changing efficiency's role on the grid. We'll discuss this changing paradigm in our first segment.

Then, we'll move to electrification. Why are heat pumps suddenly getting so much attention? And how can they help meet efficiency and decarbonization goals?

Finally, we'll end with an update on how global power brokers are thinking about energy at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Katherine comes to us from the event.

Don't forget to rate and review us on Apple podcasts. We're giving away a free subscription to GTM Squared to the person who writes the most interesting review before the end of January.

Read along with us:

  • Twitter thread of efficiency resources suggested by listeners
  • ACEEE: Snapshot of Energy Efficiency Performance Incentives for Electric Utilities
  • Nexant: The Need for a Holistic Electrification Strategy
  • GTM: Electric Heating Accelerates the Push for Deep Decarbonization, but Cost Remains an Issue
  • GTM: Electric Heat Pumps Can Slash Heating Emissions by More Than Half in California Homes
  • Strategen Consulting: Is the "Duck Curve" Eroding the Value of Energy Efficiency?

Support for this podcast comes from Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Jan 24, 2019
PG&E's Looming Historic Bankruptcy
00:58:23

We are about to witness one of the most contentious and consequential bankruptcies in the history of energy.

PG&E, California’s biggest utility, is reeling from wildfire costs — and it is now headed to the courts, where it will likely be dismantled.

Will it crush California’s goals to clean up the electric grid? Or will lawmakers step in with a political fix? The stakes couldn’t be higher. We’re going to tackle the big questions raised by PG&E’s spiral.

Then, why are hundreds of liberal green groups shutting down every technology except wind and solar as part of the Green New Deal? We’ll discuss a letter has raised a lot of criticism — and risks fighting among allies even before a real plan is considered.

Finally, we’ll have a rundown of a terrifying Wall Street Journal story about how the Russians infiltrated dozens of utilities, allowing them to hide out inside the computer systems controlling the grid.

Don't forget to rate and review us on Apple podcasts. We're giving away a free subscription to GTM Squared to the person who writes the most interesting review before the end of January.

Read along with us:

  • GTM: The Big Questions Raised by PG&E’s Coming Bankruptcy
  • Los Angeles Times: PG&E’s Bankruptcy Could Slow California’s Fight Against Climate Change
  • Jigar's op-ed in The Hill: Modern Energy Infrastructure Could Mitigate California’s Wildfire Crisis
  • Vox: Here’s One Fight the Green New Deal Should Avoid for Now
  • Wall Street Journal: America’s Electric Grid Has a Vulnerable Back Door—and Russia Walked Through It


Support for this podcast comes from Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Jan 17, 2019
Government Shuts Down, Pollution Ramps Up
00:44:06

The political insanity in Washington can feel disconnected from reality. But two years into the Trump presidency, Americans all over the country are feeling it in the form of higher pollution.

In this week's episode, we're starting off with a look at how the government shutdown and Trump's regulatory rollback are impacting energy-related agencies, and encouraging the discharge of more chemicals, heavy metals and air pollutants.

Then Bill Gates is once again talking about the limits of renewables and the importance of nukes. Where does Gates’ message and investment thesis stack up with the reality of the global emissions picture?

Finally, we revisit the media and climate change. 60 Minutes is talking about the New Green Deal; Meet the Press devoted an hour to climate; and the New York Times called climate change the most important story of 2018. A sign of things of change in the media environment?

Read along with us:


Support for this podcast comes from Wunder Capital. Wunder Capital is the leading commercial solar financing company in the United States. Click here to find out how Wunder Capital can help you finance your next commercial solar project.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PodcastsStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jan 09, 2019
2018 Reflections and Prognostications
00:51:30

This week, it’s our year-ender episode. And you know what that means: we’re going round the horn with our assessment of 2018.

First, we’ll discuss the top trends of the year. 

Then, a roundup of the best energy journalism of 2018. 

And finally, some predictions for 2019 — with a twist.

Here some links to our top journalism choices:


The Energy Gang is brought to you by GE's Reservoir, a modular lithium-ion energy storage system that can slash construction costs by 50 percent. Find out more about what Reservoir can do for your electric grid, solar plant, wind farm, microgrid or thermal power plant.

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Dec 21, 2018
Watt It Takes: The Origin Story of Wunder Capital
01:02:01

This week on Watt It Takes: Wunder Capital CEO Bryan Birsic on why he wants to solve the commercial solar financing challenge, when so many others couldn't.

"That is what a startup is to me. It's 50 or 100 people who can move a multi-billion-dollar industry in a way that an incumbent with thousands of people and multitudes of resources cannot," says Birsic.

Since its launch in 2014, Wunder has exploded onto the solar scene. In this edition of Watt It Takes, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch talks with Birsic about applying the lessons from fintech to cleantech.

Watt It Takes is a collaboration between Powerhouse and Greentech Media. The series is recorded in front of a live audience at Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

This podcast is brought to you by GE's Reservoir, a modular lithium-ion energy storage system that can slash construction costs by 50 percent. Find out more about what Reservoir can do for your electric grid, solar plant, wind farm, microgrid, or thermal power plant.

We’re giving listeners major discounts this fall. Use the promo code PODCAST to get a $50 discount for a GTM Squared membership and 20% off our final GTM conferences of the season. Get your GTM conference discount here. Get your GTM Squared discounted membership here.

Listen to our other episodes of Watt It Takes: 

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Dec 06, 2018
Can Geothermal Scale?
00:47:27

Back in 2008, there was a lot of excitement about geothermal. Many major banks were backing large-scale geothermal projects around the world; a wide range of startups were promising to unlock new resources; and wind and solar hadn’t shown their explosive growth yet. 

But then the financial crisis hit. In the decade since, growth in geothermal has been lumpy — relegated to a handful of supportive markets around the world. 

Why has geothermal grown so slowly compared to other renewables? What’s holding it back?

This week, we’re joined by Alexander Richter, the founder of the geothermal news site ThinkGeoEnergy. Alex has experience in project finance, research and journalism. We’ll talk with him about the last decade of geothermal development.

Then, in the second half of the show, we discuss the Green New Deal. 

There’s a movement within the Democratic Party to push climate hard. What’s behind it? How would the New Green Deal work? (For a compliment to this discussion, check out the latest episode of Political Climate.)

The Energy Gang is brought to you by GE's Reservoir, a modular lithium-ion energy storage system that can slash construction costs by 50 percent. Find out more about what Reservoir can do for your electric grid, solar plant, wind farm, microgrid or thermal power plant.

We’re giving listeners major discounts this fall. Use the promo code PODCAST to get a $50 discount for a GTM Squared membership and 20% off our final GTM conferences of the season.

Get your GTM conference discount here

Get your GTM Squared discounted membership here.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 28, 2018
What if Utilities Are to Blame for Wildfires?
00:39:51

California has seen a million and a half acres of forest burned this year. As the state recovers from the devastating Camp Fire and Woolsey Fire, residents are looking for someone to blame.

Now attention turns to utilities. Both Southern California Edison and Pacific Gas & Electric are under investigation and facing class-action lawsuits for potentially starting the blazes.

What happens to utilities if they are found at fault? And how do you protect a vulnerable electric grid as these fire get worse and worse? We'll discuss.

Then, we’ll mark the Thanksgiving week in the second half of the show. We’ll each share our picks for the top turkey of 2018. Who made the biggest blunders this year?

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: If Wildfires​ Drive PG&E Into Bankruptcy, What Happens to Renewable Energy Contracts?
  • SF Chronicle: California Regulator Lays Groundwork for PG&E Bailout
  • National Geographic: See How a Warmer World Primed California for Large Fires

The Energy Gang is brought to you by GE's Reservoir, a modular lithium-ion energy storage system that can slash construction costs by 50 percent. Find out more about what Reservoir can do for your electric grid, solar plant, wind farm, microgrid, or thermal power plant.

We’re giving listeners major discounts this fall. Use the promo code PODCAST to get a $50 discount for a GTM Squared membership and 20% off our final GTM conferences of the season.

Get your GTM conference discount here

Get your GTM Squared discounted membership here.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 21, 2018
Watt It Takes: The Origin Story of Sunrun
00:57:18

This week on Watt It Takes: How Sunrun CEO Lynn Jurich convinced homeowners and banks to invest millions into third-party rooftop solar during the great recession.

“Everybody said it won’t work. We took it as a challenge,” says Jurich. “And so we just went for it.”

Sunrun was a pioneer in residential solar services. Unlike some of its fallen brethren pushing the national model, Sunrun grew at a much more sustainable clip. Today, the company is at the top of its game. Sunrun installed 100 megawatts of residential solar last quarter. It will likely install 5,000 residential batteries. It’s now partnering with utilities on using those batteries and rooftop systems as a virtual power plant. 

In this edition of Watt It Takes, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch talks with Jurich about how she went from begging homeowners at county fairs to signing hundreds of thousands of customers.

This podcast is brought to you by GE's Reservoir, a modular lithium-ion energy storage system that can slash construction costs by 50 percent. Find out more about what Reservoir can do for your electric grid, solar plant, wind farm, microgrid, or thermal power plant.

We’re giving listeners major discounts this fall. Use the promo code PODCAST to get a $50 discount for a GTM Squared membership and 20% off our final GTM conferences of the season. Get your GTM conference discount here. Get your GTM Squared discounted membership here.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 15, 2018
Post-Election Punditry
00:45:34

This week: we make sense of America’s midterm elections.

Will Democrats do anything on energy in the House? Why did so many ballot initiatives fail? What does the score tell us about the value of running as a climate hawk?

First, we’ll look at what happened in states with major ballot questions on carbon pricing, market design and renewables. 

Then, what happens over the next two years under Democratic leadership in the House.

Finally, some specific races we were watching and why.

We’re giving listeners major discounts this fall. Use the promo code PODCAST to get a $50 discount for a GTM Squared membership and 20% off our final GTM conferences of the season. 

Get your GTM conference discount here

Get your GTM Squared discounted membership here.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by GE's Reservoir, a modular lithium-ion energy storage system that can slash construction costs by 50 percent. Find out more about what Reservoir can do for your electric grid, solar plant, wind farm, microgrid or thermal power plant.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Nov 08, 2018
How the 2008 Financial Crisis Shaped Clean Energy
01:01:21

Ten years ago this week, stock markets around the world cratered as fears grew that the global economy was headed into a deep, dark recession.

Alan Greenspan called it “a once-in-a-century credit tsunami.”

Today, we are still feeling the economic and geopolitical consequences of the financial crisis. Energy markets were also transformed as a result — often in surprisingly positive ways.

In this episode of The Energy Gang, we’ll discussing the impact of the 2008 market meltdown a decade on. Would clean energy have received the same kind of government support without the crisis?

Then, we’ll turn to biomass. Biomass is one of the world’s top renewable resources for heat and electricity, but it’s facing some serious challenges, particularly here in the U.S. We’ll detail some of those problems.

Finally, Canada is putting a national carbon tax in place. How will it work? And can Prime Minister Trudeau rally Canadians in conservative-leaning provinces behind it?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by GE's Reservoir, a modular lithium-ion energy storage system that can slash construction costs by 50 percent. Find out more about what Reservoir can do for your electric grid, solar plant, wind farm, microgrid, or thermal power plant.

Recommended reading/listening:

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Oct 26, 2018
Trump's Coal Bailout Stalls; Brexit Looms Large for Energy
00:42:22

This week: the White House abandons a plan to save coal plants. Did Trump read the IPCC’s latest report and have a change of heart? Turns out, the legally-flimsy effort caved under its own weight. We’ll explain.

Then, failing Brexit talks weigh heavily on energy companies in the UK. If a deal can’t be struck with the EU, what will happen to energy markets?

Finally, Illinois came out of nowhere with an ambitious community solar program. But it’s gone nowhere. What happened?

Recommended reading:

  • Politico: Rick Perry’s Coal Rescue Runs Aground at White House
  • Bloomberg: Report Debunking Trump’s Coal Plan Is Under Review, Administration Says
  • GTM: No-Deal Brexit Leaves Renewables Exposed
  • GTM: Inside the ‘Chaos’ Enveloping Illinois’ Distributed Solar Market

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Oct 18, 2018
Debating the New IPCC Report: Hellish or Hopeful?
00:50:46

For two years, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has been working on a new analysis about global emissions pathways. The report was released this week — and the conclusion is pretty dire.

Or is it actually more hopeful than it appears? 

This week, we’ll discuss the IPCC’s findings, debate the tone, and dissect media coverage of the report. 

Then, Orsted, the Danish mega-energy producer, is buying a leading American offshore wind developer. What does it say about the coming rush of offshore activity?

And finally, over to biofuels. President Trump is asking the EPA to lift restrictions on higher ethanol-gasoline blends in the summer. Farmers love it. The oil industry hates it. What was the political calculus?

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Oct 11, 2018
Live in NYC: Are We Making Progress?
01:35:25

This week, we're live in New York City.

Our theme: are we making progress? 

We're joined by special guest Eric Roston, the sustainability editor at Bloomberg.

A big thanks to the Urban Future Lab, ACRE and Solar One for organizing the show as part of Clean Energy Connections.

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Oct 08, 2018
Watt It Takes: How to Fly a Solar Airplane Around the World
00:48:45

For all our East Coast fans of The Energy Gang: make sure to get your tickets for our live show on October 4 in New York City! Find them here.

This week on Watt It Takes: Why one man spent 15 years of his life obsessed with flying a solar airplane around the world.

We’re going to hear from Bertrand Piccard, a Swiss-balloonist-turned-futurist who co-piloted Solar Impulse, the first solar-electric airplane to navigate the globe.

Piccard is a very inspiring person. His entire mission was to do the impossible so that he could prove what is possible with renewable energy.

“We gave a new understanding of the level of complexity that renewable energies can solve. If you can fly around the world in a solar airplane, you can do everything,” says Piccard.

Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch sat down with Piccard to hear more about the 15 years of work that went into his historic flight – and about the deep family history that influenced him.

Buy tickets to future Watt It Takes events here

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Sep 25, 2018
Hurricane Redux: Toxic Sludge, Climate Denial and Battery Storage
00:44:38

Before you do anything else, buy tickets to our live show on October 4 in New York City. It sells out fast, so get your tickets now!

One year after Hurricanes Harvey and Maria crushed Texas and Puerto Rico, Florence became one of the ten costliest hurricanes in U.S. history. 

North Carolina is still reeling from severe flooding. And like Houston last year, the damage was made worse because of coastal development policies — even while state scientists sounded the alarm about rising sea levels. 

We’re going to recap where things stand.

Then, residential battery storage. All these storms are creating new demand for batteries. It’s changing solar. We’ll discuss how much.

And then the billion-dollar pickup for Lucid Motors. Weren’t the Saudis supposed to take Tesla private? How did they end up throwing a $1 billion into lesser-known electric car company?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings among any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

Recommended reading:

  • New York Times: North Carolina, Warned of Rising Seas, Chose to Favor Development
  • GTM: Clean Energy Players Weather Florence
  • Forbes: Hurricane Florence Brings The Issue Of Coal Ash Back To The Surface
  • GTM: Residential Storage Has Jumped Ahead. Can Utilities Keep Up?
  • Bloomberg: Saudi Wealth Fund to Invest $1 Billion in Tesla's Rival Lucid
  • Vox: The Public Wants 100% Renewable Energy, and Quick

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Sep 21, 2018
Watt It Takes: How Sunnova's John Berger Convinced Oil & Gas Investors to Believe in Solar
01:00:18

This week on Watt It Takes: How a Texas entrepreneur with fossil fuel roots came to see solar and storage as the future of energy. 

We feature a conversation with John Berger, the CEO of the residential solar-and-storage firm Sunnova, about his mission to convince traditional energy investors to put their money into solar. Sunnova has pulled in tens of millions of dollars from investors who once thought solar was laughable.

"I'm proud of getting a bunch of oil and gas money. I worked hard to get that money. And I want a lot more of it. The reason is that there's been a lot of success — whether you love it or not — there's been a lot of financial success in oil and gas and there's a lot of really talented companies that have built big companies. And we need them to start putting their money in this space," says Berger.

Today, Sunnova is the fourth-biggest third-party solar provider in America, according to Wood Mackenzie's U.S. Distributed Solar Service.

Berger’s path is different than a lot of others in residential solar, who’ve mostly come tech, finance, or the environmental world. In this edition of Watt It Takes, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch talks with Berger about his time at Enron, his belief in battery storage, his focus on resiliency in Puerto Rico, and his leadership strategy.

Watt It Takes is a collaboration between Powerhouse and Greentech Media. The series is recorded in front of a live audience at Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings among any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

Listen to our previous episode of Watt It Takes:

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Sep 13, 2018
California's 100% Clean Energy Gambit
00:52:33

This week: California passes a bill to source 100% clean electricity by 2045. What does that actually mean? And more importantly, how will the target be met?

Then, writing in the New York Times this weekend, journalist Bethany McLean warned about fracking’s financial bubble. Is this a dire warning or a re-hash of old arguments?

We’ll end with a look at battery materials. Sustainability concerns are growing, while markets for lithium, nickel and cobalt fluctuate wildly. Are EVs and stationary storage batteries already shaking things up?

Recommended reading/listening:

  • Political Climate: Taking 100% Clean Energy From ‘Radical’ to ‘Political Reality’
  • New York Times: The Next Financial Crisis Lurks Underground
  • GTM: Battery Markets and Metals Markets Have Officially Collided

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings among any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Sep 06, 2018
1979-1989: The Decade We Almost Saved the Planet
00:47:46

This week, we're using an entire episode to discuss an ambitious piece of reporting on climate change. Earlier this month, the New York Times Magazine devoted an entire issue to a specific period of time in modern history: 1979 and 1989.

It was a time when we first reckoned with the impact of climate change — a period of great awakening in science, politics and industry to the threat of greenhouse gases.

As we’re painfully aware, that awakening didn’t turn into action. The 31,000-word piece weaves together a narrative to help explain why — when everyone seemed to be on the same page about the threat — we failed.

We talk with Author Nathaniel Rich about the reason he wrote the piece, detail some of the most important moments during the decade, and address criticisms.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings among any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

Recommended reading:

  • New York Times: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change
  • Atlantic: The Problem With The New York Times’ Big Story on Climate Change
  • Guardian: 30 Years on, World Is Failing 'Miserably’ to Address Climate Change

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 30, 2018
Watt It Takes: The Promise of Electric Buses With Proterra CEO Ryan Popple
01:03:48

This week on Watt It Takes: How Ryan Popple’s experience in the military, Tesla and venture capital helped him lead electric bus maker Proterra.

“It’s good for the ‘keep calm and carry on mentality’ when people tend to bring me a box of broken parts. So if you’re the founder or CEO of an organization, you shouldn’t be surprised when most of what is brought to you is bad news.”

Proterra is on a roll. The company is a leading manufacturer of heavy-duty electric buses in North America, with over 50 customers, a one-year backlog and vehicles on the road in two dozen cities. The company’s current pipeline represents 10 percent of the US transit fleet.

It took many years to reach this stage. Proterra faced numerous difficult technical re-designs and slow customer adoption over the last decade. In this interview, Popple reflects on how the company moved through the valley of death.

Watt It Takes is a collaboration between Powerhouse and Greentech Media. The series is recorded in front of a live audience at Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings among any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Aug 22, 2018
One Trillion Watts of Wind and Solar
00:48:14

There are now one trillion watts of wind and solar installed around the world, according to new figures from BNEF.

It took a few decades to get here, but it’ll only take five years to do it again — and nearly 50 percent cheaper. Now that we’ve reached the terawatt scale, the true acceleration begins.

This week on the podcast, we'll contextualize that landmark for renewables.

Then, we'll discuss Tesla’s privatization debacle. Musk claimed on twitter that he has a plan to take Tesla private. Insiders said he didn’t. The board said it was never notified. Securities lawyers said Musk is flirting with the law. We’ll explain what’s going on.

We end in Germany, where a new commission is planning an end to coal in the country. Can it be a model for other industrialized countries?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings among any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

Recommended reading:

  • BNEF: World Reaches 1,000GW of Wind and Solar, Keeps Going
  • New York Times: Tesla Directors, in Damage Control Mode, Want Elon Musk to Stop Tweeting
  • GTM: A Timeline of Tesla's Privatization Saga
  • GTM: German Commission Grapples With an End to Coal: ‘The Biggest Story No One Is Talking About’

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Aug 16, 2018
Introducing Political Climate
00:46:29

The Gang is on summer vacation this week. We'll be back soon with our regular analysis and debate on the stories in energy.

Meanwhile, we'd like to introduce you to Political Climate, GTM's newest podcast hosted by Senior Editor Julia Pyper.

The show features healthy debates from Republicans and Democrats over the politics of energy and climate. Enjoy this bonus episode and share your feedback with The Energy Gang and Political Climate on Twitter.

Subscribe to Political Climate via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayTuneInOvercastStitcher and Spotify.

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Aug 08, 2018
Watt It Takes: How Schwarzenegger’s Chief of Staff Built a Battery Company
01:00:51

This week on Watt It Takes: We’ll hear from Susan Kennedy, the CEO of Advanced Microgrid Solutions, about her transition from politics to behind-the-meter energy storage.

Kennedy was an important player in California environmental politics. She influenced some of the biggest pieces of legislation that launched the state’s solar industry and cap-and-trade market. She also worked as a senior advisor to some the biggest names in both parties, including Dianne Feinstein and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

After two decades in policy and politics, Kennedy set out to build a company that could take on the unique challenges of distributed energy integration. AMS was born. It has since become one of the most important startups in the booming behind-the-meter storage market.

"You have to believe that you can do anything. You have to have courage and faith to do what you've never done before."

Watt It Takes is a collaboration between Powerhouse and Greentech Media. The series is recorded in front of a live audience at Powerhouse headquarters in Oakland, California. Buy tickets for upcoming events.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings among any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 30, 2018
A Grab Bag With Vox's David Roberts
01:02:40

This week, David Roberts, a staff writer at Vox, joins the gang to talk about a wide range of topics in the news.

How would a good carbon tax work? Are we fooling ourselves thinking Republicans will ever support one?

In the absence of a carbon price, is 100% renewable energy good politics? Is it good policy?

Should we bail out nuclear? Can renewables fill in the gap created by closing nuke plants?

What should we be hopeful about?

We’ll spend the second half of the show talking about electric buses. Jigar’s company, Generate Capital, is deploying $200 million for electric bus leases. Are we reaching a tipping point for transit?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings among any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

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Jul 27, 2018
Trump, Putin and European Gas
00:39:35
Jul 18, 2018
The Billion-Dollar Crash of Better Place
00:58:30

Dozens of companies across solar, batteries and biofuels have imploded over the years. But it's hard to match the spectacular implosion of Better Place five years ago.

Better Place rose to fame in 2007, pulling in nearly $1 billion of venture capital by promising to put millions of cheap electric cars and battery switching stations on roads around the world. It fell nearly as quickly into bankruptcy after a series of poor decisions, market twists and bitter internal disputes.

A new book on the company's history, Totaled: The Billion-Dollar Crash of the Startup that Took on Big Auto, Big Oil and the World, uncovers lots of engrossing details on Better Place's quixotic mission to revolutionize electric vehicles.

On this week's Energy Gang podcast, we're talking to author Brian Blum about the Israeli EV company's rise and demise. "When you're an entrepreneur of any size, being able to change and to iterate is going to make your company a success. And Better Place really didn't do that," said Blum.

Blum will also talk about his personal experience with Better Place's car made in collaboration with Renault.

Later in the show, what does Donald Trump’s Supreme Court pick mean for environmental and energy law? We’ll look at the record of Judge Brett Kavanaugh.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Mission Solar Energy, a solar module manufacturer based in San Antonio, Texas. Mission Solar's high-performance solar panels have the highest testing ratings than any North American manufacturer in the market. Learn more about Mission's high-efficiency modules.

Recommended reading and listening: 

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

And while you're there, subscribe to our other podcasts, The Interchange and Political Climate.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jul 12, 2018
Fantasy Sports for Energy Nerds
00:44:41

Like fantasy sports? Listen to our deep decarbonization draft. 

The Energy Gang is break this week for the July 4 holiday. We'll be back next week.

In the meantime, we're offering up a re-run from The Interchange. 

In this episode, Shayle and Stephen choose their rosters of nine technologies to decarbonize the global economy. The goal: find the best resource mix to keep global temperatures below 2 degrees Celsius. 

  • The draft has nine rounds. The “team” resulting from each person’s picks will need to stand on its own.
  • Each pick must be a unique technology. For example, “energy efficiency” is not a pick, but “LED lighting” is.
  • Technologies with major subsets must be picked separately. For example, rooftop solar and centralized solar are two different picks.
  • The existing technology mix will stand. (We don’t need to pick “transmission & distribution" in order to have electricity.)
  • The time horizon will be through 2050.
  • The winner will be chosen by listeners.

If you like what you hear, subscribe to The Interchange anywhere you get your podcasts!

The Energy Gang will be back next week.


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Jul 05, 2018
We Have a Gas Problem
00:41:05

A new peer-reviewed study in the journal Science gives us a clearer picture of the climate impact of natural gas. According to researchers, methane leakage across oil and gas operations in the U.S. are 60 percent higher than government estimates. Put another way: the methane leakage from oil and gas has the same warming effect over a 20-year time period as all America’s coal capacity in 2015.

Natural gas has been vital to lowering power-sector carbon emissions. Are methane leaks reversing that progress? We'll provide some context.

Then, we'll talk about how GE and Siemens are grappling with dramatic changes in demand for gas turbines. Both companies are de-emphasizing their gas businesses, while accelerating investments in renewables and efficiency. How will these power giants evolve?

This podcast is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Recommended reading:

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

And while you're there, subscribe to our other podcasts, The Interchange and Political Climate.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jun 28, 2018
Watt It Takes: How a NASA Roboticist Built a Groundbreaking Solar Tracker
00:46:48

Leila Madrone was constantly looking for creative ways to use robots. In the mid 2000's, she co-founded a music group called Ensemble Robot, which featured robots that played music. 

"I had this great passion to use robotics to have meaning in the world," said Madrone. Later, Madrone worked for NASA's intelligent robotics group. 

Then she caught the solar bug: "Solar seemed like where the most possibility was for the future."

She teamed up with Saul Griffith, an expert in self-replicating machines, to start Sunfolding. It started with a seemingly simple idea: Solar trackers move solar panels over the day to create the most energy. But they’re made of heavy, expensive components. What if you could develop a cheaper, more efficient tracker using premium plastic materials and the power of air to maximize energy production?

With that idea, Leila built Sunfolding’s AirDrive technology that combines the functionality of motors, gears, dampers and batteries into a single component primarily composed of air.

In this edition of Watt It Takes, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch interviews Leila Madrone about her path from music-making NASA roboticist to solar-tracker CEO.

This podcast is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Watt It Takes is a live interview series produced by Powerhouse in partnership with GTM. The conversation was recorded live in Oakland, California.

Listen to our other episodes of Watt It Takes:

Like our shows? Make sure to give The InterchangeThe Energy Gang and Political Climate a rating and review on Apple podcasts. And make sure to subscribe to our shows on Apple podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, or anywhere you get your podcasts.

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Jun 19, 2018
Tesla's Layoffs: Musk Pushes for Profits
00:47:39

Elon Musk announced Monday that Tesla is laying off 9 percent of salaried employees at the company. This is not the first round of sweeping layoffs at Tesla — the most recent came after the SolarCity acquisition. But this appears to be the biggest so far.

We'll discuss Elon's new quest for profitability.

Then, we'll cover the never-ending saga in Washington over saving coal plants. The Trump Administration is now trying to invoke national security to prop up closing coal and nuke plants – and the nation’s top energy regulators are giving it the cold shoulder.

Finally, The Energy Gang is celebrating its fifth anniversary this week. To mark the occasion, we'll each pick a single moment from the last five years caused an unstoppable ripple in the world of energy.

This podcast is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Recommended reading/listening:

  • GTM: Tesla to Cut Workforce by 9%; Musk Says It Won’t Affect Model 3 Production
  • Bloomberg: Musk’s Model 3 Miscalculation Culminates in Major Tesla Job Cuts
  • Harvard Law podcast with Ari Peskoe on DOE's coal bailout
  • Bloomberg: Trump Prepares Lifeline for Money-Losing Coal Plants

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

And while you're there, subscribe to our other podcasts, The Interchange and Political Climate.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Jun 14, 2018
Your Questions Answered: The Politics Edition
00:43:24

What’s the optimal way to spend money raised by a carbon tax?

How should climate play in Florida’s big toss-up Congressional race?

What’s the best energy platform for gubernatorial candidates?

This week: your questions answered. We got a bunch of queries from listeners about politics — so that’s the direction we’re headed. We'll discuss what these individual stories tell us about nationwide elections in 2018.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Recommended reading:

  • PERI report on NY carbon tax: An Economic Framework for Promoting Climate Stabilization and Expanding Good Job Opportunities
  • Miami Herald: Republicans Can’t Generate Buzz for Ros-Lehtinen’s Seat, and Some Say It’s Unwinnable
  • Mother Jones: The Illinois Governor’s Race Is Poised to Become the Most Expensive in History

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

And while you're there, subscribe to our other podcasts, The Interchange and Political Climate



See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 24, 2018
Electrify Everything: Rethinking Home Performance
00:47:58

There’s a new phrase bouncing around energy circles: Electrify Everything.

This week, we talk to Nate Adams, a home performance expert whose personal mission is to rip gas meters out of homes and move us closer toward full electrification. As he’s learned from experience, it’s not easy.

The electrification of homes may be getting easier in California, however.

In the second half of the show, we’re going to tackle California’s new building codes. Starting in 2020, most new homes will have to come with solar panels on the roof. And there are new incentives for electric space heating and water heating – a very big step toward electrification of everything.

The codes have created a very strong reaction, both positive and negative – and we’ll look at both sides.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: Electrify Everything! A Practical Guide to Ditching Your Gas Meter
  • GTM: What Does It Take to Electrify Everything in Your Home?
  • Vox: The Key to Tackling Climate Change: Electrify Everything
  • GTM: California Rooftop Solar Mandate to Boost Sales 14% Over 4 Years
  • Bloomberg: California Puts Solar on the Roof and Up For Grabs
  • Vox: California Will Require Solar Panels on All New Homes. That’s Not Necessarily a Good Thing

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

And while you're there, subscribe to our other podcasts, The Interchange and Political Climate

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 17, 2018
Watt It Takes: Billy Parish, From Dropout Activist to Solar CEO
00:40:47

Billy Parish dropped out of college to pursue a career in climate activism. Today, he's the CEO of America's biggest rooftop solar loan company, Mosaic.

In this edition of Watt It Takes, Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch interviews Parish about his transition from activist to executive. They'll talk about the many iterations of Mosaic, difficulties in raising money from VCs, and Parish's philosophy on building a successful team.

Watt It Takes is a live interview series produced by Powerhouse in partnership with GTM. The conversation was recorded live in Oakland, California.

This podcast is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Listen to our other episodes of Watt It Takes:

Like our shows? Make sure to give The InterchangeThe Energy Gang and Political Climate a rating and review on Apple podcasts. And make sure to subscribe to both shows on Apple podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, or anywhere you get your podcasts.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 09, 2018
Mythbusting
00:46:06

We all fall victim to myths. But when they're deeply tied to our belief systems, they can be nearly impossible to break. 

On this week's show, we're busting some of the most common myths in clean energy:

In the second half of the program, we'll revisit the swampy politics of solar in Alabama, South Carolina and Florida. A battle over net metering wages in South Carolina; a dispute over solar leasing continues in Florida; and a legal fight over solar fees in Alabama escalates.

Do you have a question you want us to answer? We want to hear from you. Record yourself asking your question in a quiet room and send your voice memo to podcasts@greentechmedia.com. Maybe we'll answer it in an upcoming episode.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

May 04, 2018
For Taxis, It's Uber. For Utilities, Could It Be DERs? [Original Content]
00:26:04

This podcast episode sponsored by West Monroe Partners, and brought to you by creative strategies.

How do we think about change in the electric utility industry caused by distributed resources? Is it like telecom? Internet-based retail?

Sam Uyeno, senior manager in West Monroe Partners’ energy and utilities practice, says that it may be more like ride sharing. As distributed resources flourish, he argues that utilities will have to think about how to leverage new customers within its network — just as Uber came into the taxi market and allowed anyone to become operators. 

When you consider distributed resource management software, “maybe that’s the Uber.”

Utilities are making large investments to keep up with the quickening pace of technological innovation. But it may not be enough to keep up with distributed energy resources. Utilities should also be looking for a new regulatory compact all together, argues Tom Hulsebosch, senior managing director for West Monroe Partner’s Energy & Utilities and sustainability practice. 

In this podcast, we talk with Hulsebosch and Uyeno about the technology investments and business practices that utilities need to adopt in order to get ahead of the wave of distributed assets connecting to the grid.

Recommended reading:


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May 02, 2018
A New Era of Grid Planning: "Folks Are Frustrated"
00:48:04

Are we entering a new era of grid planning? In recent years, we've assumed that sweeping reforms are the best way to get distributed energy built. But in pockets of the country, a more localized approach to deploying these assets is taking hold – and it could be the sign of a much bigger shift to come.

On this week's Energy Gang, we'll look at Washington, D.C.'s new proposal for an authority that would push PEPCO to consider distributed alternatives to infrastructure projects.

Then, why is one of the most progressive utilities in the country slow in scaling distributed energy offerings? We'll look at the mixed experience of Green Mountain Power.

Finally, we revisit Puerto Rico. The power is mostly back on, but hurricane season is approaching quickly. What comes next?

Do you have a question you want us to answer? We want to hear from you. Record yourself on your phone asking the question in a quiet room and send us your voice memo to podcasts@greentechmedia.com. Maybe we'll answer it in an upcoming episode.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Recommended reading:

  • GTM Squared: A Radical Approach to Grid Edge Regulatory Reform
  • GTM: Green Mountain Power’s Distributed Energy Business Isn’t Scaling Fast Enough
  • Microgrid Knowledge: The Microgrids Worked as Puerto Rico’s Grid Went Down Again
  • Reveal investigation of Tesla: The Hidden Problems of Silicon Valley

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 27, 2018
Why SunPower Is Buying SolarWorld USA
00:48:03

SunPower couldn’t convince the Trump Administration to abandon tariffs on imported solar panels. So now it plans to buy one of the companies pushing tariffs in the first place.

Yesterday, SunPower unveiled plans to acquire SolarWorld’s U.S. operations. Two months ago, CEO Tom Werner said SunPower was going to divest from America. But now he’s buying his way back in.

In this week's episode, we'll explain how Trump's demands for tariffs are shifting the PV manufacturing landscape.

Then, 173 countries agreed to cut emissions from the shipping sector by 2050. What are the technological solutions for a sector that could make up one-fifth of global emissions by the middle of the century?

We'll end with the latest from Germany. Katherine was in the country getting an update on the closely scrutinized energy transition there — and we’ll get her take on where things stand.

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

You can subscribe to Political Climate podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle Play and Stitcher

Recommended reading:

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 19, 2018
Statoil Bets on Floating Wind and Carbon Capture
00:40:29

Statoil is the largest operator of oil and gas rigs around the world. Consequently, the company's biggest low-carbon investments are offshore: floating wind farms and distributed carbon capture and storage.

This week, we're talking to Stephen Bull, the VP in charge of Statoil's low-carbon business, about where he sees the most potential. We'll talk to him about the performance of floating wind, the economics of CCS, and whether oil companies are investing enough in their new energy divisions.

We'll spend the second half of the show talking about two days of debate in Washington over the future of technology. No, it wasn't Mark Zuckerberg's hearing on Capitol Hill. It was a conference at FERC, where regulators are trying to figure out how to integrate distributed resources into wholesale markets. What did they accomplish? What does it portend for the future of distributed energy?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through iOS, Android and web apps. Find out more.

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: Statoil Plans to Integrate Battery Storage With Floating Offshore Wind
  • GTM: World’s First Floating Offshore Wind Farm Achieves 65% Capacity Factor After 3 Months
  • Gas Strategies: Carbon Capture & Storage Key to Delivering on the Paris Agreement
  • GTM: Utilities, Grid Operators Tell FERC They Need Real-Time Data to Better Manage DERs

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 13, 2018
Reality Check? Global Fossil Fuel Consumption Grows
00:48:41

After a multi-year decline, global carbon emissions are on the upswing.

The International Energy Agency now says that emissions grew in 2017 -- caused by an increase oil, natural gas and coal demand. Nearly three-quarters of new energy demand across the globe was served by fossil fuels.

At the same time, America saw another yearly drop in carbon emissions, which IEA says was assisted by renewables. But with more and more carbon-free nuclear plants slated for closure across the U.S., many worry the trend will end.

In this week's Energy Gang, we'll look at trends in global energy demand. We'll also look to the situation in the U.S., where concerns about losing nuclear are growing.

Then, we'll talk about FirstEnergy Solutions' bankruptcy. Could the company find a way to save its nuclear plants by compromising with renewables advocates? 

Finally, EPA chief Scott Pruitt is cutting back on Obama-era fuel efficiency standards. We’ll explore the consequences. Are CAFE standards even the right policy?

The Energy Gang is brought to you by Sense. Sense installs in your home's electrical panel and provides insight into your energy use and home activity through our iOS, Android, and web apps. Find out more.

Recommended reading:

  • EIA: Global Energy and CO2 Status Report
  • Third Way: How Nuclear Retirements Might Undermine Clean Power Plan Progress
  • GTM: FirstEnergy Seeks Bankruptcy Protection for Ailing Coal and Nuclear Subsidiaries
  • GTM: California Girds for Battle as EPA Rules to Weaken Vehicle Emissions Standards
  • R Street Institute: Replacing Fuel-Economy Rules With Clean Tax Cuts

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Apr 05, 2018
Trouble at Silicon Valley Car Companies
00:35:37

It’s been a bad couple of weeks for two of Silicon Valley’s top car companies.

After a pedestrian was killed by one of Uber’s autonomous cars in Arizona, the company’s AV operations were suspended. Other driverless car companies are now weighing the consequences to the technology, and regulators are asking if we need to slow down real-world testing.

Tesla is dealing with two crashes of its own. The crash of a Model X is raising questions about autopilot mode, and its stock has crashed 25 percent this month as investors worry about Model 3 delivery problems.

We'll look at the latest for Uber and Tesla in this week's episode.

Then, we'll return to Washington. It was also a bad week for Trump, who didn’t get his cuts to energy programs in the latest federal budget. We’ll look at why the GOP is so out of step with the White House on clean energy cuts.

This podcast is brought to you by CPower Energy Management. Find out more about CPower's demand-side energy management solutions.

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: Arizona Suspends Uber’s Autonomous Cars After a Death. What’s Next for Driverless Cars?
  • GTM: Tesla Hit by Executive Churn, Model 3 Quality Concerns
  • GTM: The President’s Own Party Still Doesn’t Back His Attempts to Dismantle Clean Energy

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 29, 2018
The SunEdison Origin Story
00:55:46

In the early 2000s, investors weren't very interested in SunEdison's business plan to finance solar with power purchase agreements.

"No one wanted to hear about physical infrastructure," said Jigar Shah, who drafted the business plan and co-founded the company.

It took until 2006 to raise venture capital. But soon after, PPA customers started rolling in: Staples, Ikea, then Whole Foods.

"It was an idea who's time had come," said Shah. The PPA is now the backbone of solar.

In this week's edition of the live podcast series Watt It Takes, Shah sits down with Powerhouse CEO Emily Kirsch to discuss his career in solar -- from Astropower to the Department of Energy to BP Solar and, eventually, to founding (and leaving) SunEdison.

Jigar talks about why he left SunEdison, why he thinks Goldman Sachs was a terrible board member, and why cleantech entrepreneurs are taking really dumb money.

Watt It Takes is a live interview series produced by Powerhouse in partnership with GTM. The conversation was recorded live in Oakland, California.

This podcast is brought to you by CPower Energy Management. Find out more about CPower's demand-side energy management solutions.

Listen to our other episodes of Watt It Takes:

Like our shows? Make sure to give The Interchange and The Energy Gang a rating and review on Apple podcasts. And make sure to subscribe to both shows on Apple podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, or anywhere you get your podcasts.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 26, 2018
EVs, AVs and Sharing: Don't Screw Up the Transportation Revolution
00:58:48

There are three forces coming together in the transportation sector: vehicle autonomy, vehicle sharing, and vehicle electrification.

On their own, app-based sharing and electric vehicles are powerful agents of change. Together with automation, "they're revolutionary," argues Dr. Dan Sperling, author of a new book on the subject.

"It will change our lifestyles, it'll change the automobile industry, it'll change land use and cities, it'll change energy," he explains on this week's podcast.

Sperling is the author of Three Revolutions: Steering Automated, Shared, and Electric Vehicles to a Better Future. He joins us on The Energy Gang for a conversation about whether these revolutions will reinvent -- or ruin -- the way we get around.

In the second half of the show, we'll talk about the continued realignment of global energy giants. We’ll run through some of the recent strategy shifts at the world’s top energy companies as they grapple with the clean energy, customer-centric transition.

This podcast is brought to you by CPower Energy Management. Find out more about CPower's demand-side energy management solutions.

Recommended reading:

  • AmazonThree Revolutions -- Steering Automated, Shared, and Electric Vehicles to a Better Future.
  • Bloomberg: Only Carpools Can Keep the Driverless Future From Becoming a Nightmare
  • GTM: Statoil Is Now Equinor, in a Rebrand for the Energy Transition
  • GTM: E.ON and RWE Merger to Create New European Giants in Renewables and Retail Energy
  • GTM: Engie Advances ‘Energy Transition’ Plan With Major Stake in Electro Power Systems

Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 16, 2018
What Utilities Can Learn From Amazon [Original Content From Tendril]
00:37:33

Amazon's analytical approach to understanding the customer allowed it to move beyond books and dominate the retail space. Entire industries are getting upended and transformed as a result.

This story about disruption is a familiar one. We’ve seen how it plays time and time again – and it’s not pretty for the incumbents who fail to catch up with technology. 

It's a compelling narrative in the utility space, where we are smack in the middle of an Amazon moment. Electricity consumers want choice. They respond to personalization. And there’s a new generation of technology providers who think they can give consumers what they want – better than traditional brick and mortar utilities.

And that’s why Tendril CEO Adrian Tuck sees the importance of talking about Amazon as a model.

“How did they go from one thing to this broad level of disruption? They massively focused on the customer and what the customer wants. They looked at every piece of the chain and they tried to make everything easier for the customer. They’re really looking at all those pieces and innovated rapidly to make the buying experience compelling and simple to use," said Tuck.

In this podcast, we'll talk with Tuck about the future of data acquisition, personalization, demand-side management and utility business models. Recommended reading:

  • Tendril e-book: The Amazon Effect: Energy in the On Demand Era and What It Means for Utilities
  • GTM: Utilities Have the Tools to Unleash the Power of Customers


This podcast is brought to you by Tendril, the industry’s leading DSM data analytics software provider. 

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 06, 2018
The Coal Boss, the Comedian and the Squirrel
00:48:46

Last June, comedian John Oliver devoted a long segment to the struggling coal industry on his HBO show Last Week Tonight

He turned his attention to Robert Murray, the CEO of Murray Energy, one of the most bombastic advocates of coal. And then Murray sued Oliver for defamation.

That defamation lawsuit was thrown out by a judge last week. But the saga tells us a lot about Robert Murray, one of the most influential figures behind the Trump Administration's coal policies.

In this week's episode, we'll discuss Murray's approach to promoting coal and silencing critics.

Then, a look at some new documents from the Seminar Network, a group created by Charles and David Koch, claiming big wins on killing climate policy. The group is planning to spend up to $400 million on mid-term elections. We'll talk about how the Kochs killed America's climate conversation over the last decade.

Finally, Trump is now claiming he saved the solar industry with tariffs. We discuss the truth. 

This podcast is brought to you by CPower Energy Management. Find out more about CPower's demand-side energy management solutions.

Recommended reading:

  • The Times-Picayune: How John Oliver and a Giant Squirrel Had Their Day in Court -- and Won
  • New York Times: How a Coal Baron’s Wish List Became President Trump’s To-Do List
  • The Intercept: Koch Document Reveals Laundry List of Policy Victories
  • GTM: Trump Claims Solar Tariffs Are ‘Reopening Plants.’ They’re Not


See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Mar 01, 2018
A Historic Moment for Energy Storage
00:47:27

If storage is the Swiss Army Knife of the electric grid, then U.S. energy regulators are breaking out their tool belts.

Last week brought a historic ruling at FERC. Commissioners told regional grid operators to create rules valuing the grid services of energy storage. Will it screw natural gas peakers – or maybe cut, saw, file, prune, hook, or crimp them?

Later in the podcast, an infrastructure redux. The White House’s infrastructure plan is out. When it comes to energy, the Trump Administration is making pipelines a priority, and largely bypassing clean energy.

We’re heading down to Mexico for our final segment. GTM was there for our solar summit last week, and we’ll share a bit of insight into the forces behind one of the hottest -- and cheapest -- solar markets in the world.

This podcast is brought to you by CPower Energy Management. Find out more about CPower's demand-side energy management solutions.

Recommended reading:

  • GTM: FERC Allows Energy Storage to Play in Nationwide Wholesale Markets
  • FERC: Final Rule on Electric Storage Participation in Regional Markets
  • GTM: The Trump Infrastructure Plan Is ‘a Big Nothing Burger’ for Clean Energy
  • WaPo: Trump's Infrastructure Plan Would Make It Harder to Challenge Pipelines
  • GTM: Mexico’s Solar Market Is Booming, but Still Has Key Hurdles to Clear

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Feb 23, 2018
Are Trump's Solar Tariffs Working?
00:45:16

Since the White House slapped penalties on solar panels made outside America, a handful of companies say they’re likely to ramp up production in the U.S.

In recent weeks, two Asian producers -- Jinko Solar and United Renewable Energy -- said they're planning to set up new module assembly plants. Other domestic producers are making plans to hire new employees.

How should we interpret this activity? Does this mean the tariffs are working? 

On this week's Energy Gang, we're joined by GTM Senior Editor Julia Pyper, who outlines the latest activity as the tariffs become law.

Then, it’s the news circuit. We’ll explore Puerto Rico’s utility privatization plans, Tesla’s virtual power plant in Australia, the Northern Pass transmission rejection, and Arizona’s conservative clean energy plan.

This podcast is brought to you by CPower Energy Management. Find out more about CPower's demand-side energy management solutions.

Stories referenced in this podcast:


Subscribe to The Energy Gang podcast via Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayStitcher or wherever you find your audio content.

See Privacy Policy at https://art19.com/privacy and California Privacy Notice at https://art19.com/privacy#do-not-sell-my-info.

Feb 07, 2018
How We Perceive Wind Farms Near Our Homes
00:41:37