From Ensia magazine, 27 September 2019: For all their many virtues, wind and solar power have one major flaw: at some point, even in the windiest, sunniest parts of the planet the wind stops blowing and the energy-giving rays of the sun disappear over the horizon. So as the world works to decarbonize its energy … Continue reading Build a better battery
From Ensia magazine, 13 October 2017: The Australian federal government’s love affair with coal has reached new levels in recent years, with federal ministers bringing chunks of the mineral into parliament and donning high-visibility mining vests as pro-coal publicity stunts. Yet against this backdrop, one Australian state has managed to break global records in the … Continue reading South Australia goes all-out on renewables despite Federal focus on coal
From Ensia magazine, 16 August 2017: “We are still in.” On June 5, 2017, with these four words a group of U.S. businesses and investors with a combined annual revenue of US$1.4 trillion sent a powerful message to the world: U.S. president Donald Trump may have withdrawn from the Paris agreement on climate change four … Continue reading Can business save the world from climate change?
From The Guardian, 13 June 2017: To illustrate the impact of battery storage on the electricity network in Australia, Prof Guoxiu Wang likes to compare it to the invention of refrigeration. “Before people invented the fridge, we produced food, we consumed food immediately,” says Wang, director of the Centre for Clean Energy Technology at the … Continue reading Battery storage and rooftop solar could mean new life post-grid for consumers
From The Guardian, 19 May 2017: Nearly a century ago, British scientist JB Haldane saw an energy future in which wind power would be used to generate hydrogen; a fuel he described as, weight-for-weight, the most efficient known method of storing energy. He thought this future was four hundred years away, but the so-called “hydrogen … Continue reading How Australia can use hydrogen to export its solar power around the world
From The Guardian, 23 February 2017: Australian homeowners with solar panels and batteries could soon trade their electricity in a digital marketplace developed by a consortium of electricity providers, energy tech startups, energy retailers and energy agencies. The Decentralised Energy Exchange – or deX – was launched on Thursday with the promise to “change the … Continue reading Australian consortium launches world-first digital energy marketplace for rooftop solar
From Ensia magazine, 9 January 2017: At 2:46 p.m. local time on Friday, March 11, 2011, Japan was rocked by the largest earthquake ever to strike its shores. The 9.1 magnitude quake triggered a devastating tsunami that killed more than 15,000 people. It also took out the back-up emergency generators that cooled the reactors at … Continue reading As global demand for electricity grows, geothermal energy heats up
From The Guardian, 27 December 2016: As any punter will know, backing winners isn’t easy. There’s a little bit of science, a little bit of art and a whole lot of luck. Australia’s independent renewable energy agency came into being in 2012 though an act of parliament, with a $2.5bn, 10-year mission to improve the … Continue reading Solar energy and rethinking geothermal: ARENA’s hits and misses