News & Events

News

Energy in the News: Friday, May 17

UMEI’s Ellen Hughes-Cromwick traveled to Las Vegas and Fort Worth, TX this week to talk with business leaders, faculty and students about battery economics, EV scenarios and the Energy Institute’s efforts to accelerate the transition to electric mobility.

Dr. Boehman, professor of mechanical engineering and director of the W.E. Lay Automotive Laboratory, and a team of U-M researchers received $2M from the Department of Energy to advance algae as an environmentally-friendly biofuel source for diesel engines. Learn more.

Congrats to Dr. Lauren Knapp, a postdoctoral researcher at the Energy Institute, on her new position as an environmental economist at NOAA! Dr. Knapp starts in June.


Events:

  • May 22: Citizens’ Climate Lobby is hosting a free screening of the documentary, The Human Element, which captures the lives of everyday Americans living on the frontlines of climate change.
  • May 26-30: The Electrochemical Society biannual meeting in Dallas, TX. Learn more.
  • June 10: Department of Energy’s Annual Merit Review in Arlington, VA. Learn more.
  • July-Sept: The Battery Lab is taking reservation for summer 2019, spots are filling quickly. Email batterylab@umich.edu to schedule your time today.  

News:

How well do electric vehicles perform in our extreme weather?

Minneapolis Star Tribune, featuring Anna Stefanopoulou

Some 1.2 million plug-in electric vehicles, including those from Nissan, Tesla and Chevrolet, have been sold in the United States, but for electric vehicles to be broadly adopted, they must be able to have a consistent range and a charging capability in a variety of conditions.

 

Carbon Dioxide Soars to Record-Breaking Levels Not Seen in at Least 800,000 Years

LiveScience, featuring Jonathan Overpeck

The last time atmospheric carbon dioxide levels were this high, way before Homo sapiens walked the planet, the Antarctic Ice Sheet was much smaller and sea levels were up to 65 feet (20 meters) higher than they are today.

 

Why Low-Income Households Need to Be Part of the Clean Energy Revolution

Yale Environment 360, featuring Tony Reames

This growing divide in energy affordability and accessibility highlights the need for what University of Michigan researcher Tony Reames refers to as “energy justice.” For decades, low-income households have tried to cope with rising energy costs. Yet, as Reames’ research shows, they often have the least access to energy-efficient or clean energy technologies.

 

U.S. faces hurdles in push to build electric vehicle supply chain

Reuters

The United States faces stiff challenges as it moves to create its own electric vehicle supply chain, industry analysts say, with the extent of the country’s metal reserves largely unknown and only a few facilities to process minerals and produce batteries.

 

Start-Ups Hoping to Fight Climate Change Struggle as Other Tech Firms Cash In

New York Times

Two major scientific organizations said last fall that even if greenhouse-gas emissions were reduced significantly, stopping drastic global warming would require technological breakthroughs that allowed for the removal of billions of tons of carbon dioxide already in the atmosphere.

 

States Start Hitting America’s Electric Drivers With Higher Fees

Bloomberg

To date, 24 states have imposed special fees on electric vehicles, according to a national association of state legislatures. The money usually comes in the form of higher registration costs that can range up to $200 per year. Last week, one Illinois legislator even proposed a $1,000 annual registration fee for electric cars.

 

AAA study finds Americans are warming to electric vehicles, but most aren’t ready to buy — at least not yet

NBC News

40 million Americans say they will at least consider a battery-electric vehicle, or BEV, for their next vehicle, but only four in 10 people believe that the majority of vehicles will be electric by 2029. The majority of Americans actually expect that most new cars will be able to drive themselves within the coming decade.

 

Electric Ridesharing Benefits the Grid, and EVgo Has the Data to Prove It

Greentech Media

Ridesharing services such as Uber, Lyft and Maven are seeing increased EV adoption across their fleets — driven largely by their own internal efforts, but increasingly due to policy pressures. In California, where there are already more than half a million EVs plugging in, this trend could appear daunting to the state grid operator. But when EVgo crunched its data, the company says it found a “demonstrable and material” benefit to the grid.