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Clean energy news: September 2023

Salt River Project celebrates National Drive Electric Week

Salt River Project is celebrating 2023 National Drive Electric Week from Sept. 22 through Oct. 1. According to SRP, drivers have been rapidly switching to electric vehicles for a variety of reasons, including car maintenance and gas. Electric vehicles require less maintenance than traditional vehicles because they do not need regular oil changes. Drivers have also been able to enjoy incentives for battery chargers and an increase in charging stations at businesses throughout the Valley. Read more >>

Freepoint Eco-Systems to construct advanced recycling facility in Arizona

Freepoint Eco-Systems LLC (“Freepoint”) announced the development of a commercial-scale advanced plastics recycling facility located in Eloy, Arizona. The ISCC Plus Certified facility will recycle end-of-life waste plastic otherwise destined for landfills or incineration. It will span 40 acres of currently undeveloped land and have the capacity to recycle approximately 180,000 tons of waste plastic per year, making it one of the largest advanced recycling facilities in the world. Read more >>

Valley residents continue to make the switch to electric vehicles at a rapid rate

Whether tired of high gas prices or not being able to drive in the HOV lane, Valley residents continue to make the switch to electric vehicles at a rapid rate. People living in SRP territory have surpassed EV adoption targets in the last few years, with more than 40,500 EVs leased or purchased in SRP’s service territory as of this April. SRP hears from customers that the switch to EVs has not only been easy, but they are pleasantly surprised at the cost savings they experience. Below are some of the well-loved programs and offerings SRP residential and business customers continue to take advantage of as they go electric. Read more >>

Nikola Corporation appoints new chief operating officer

Nikola Corporation (Nasdaq: NKLA), a global leader in zero-emissions transportation and energy supply and infrastructure solutions, via its HYLA brand, today announced the appointment of Mary Chan as Chief Operating Officer (COO), effective October 9, 2023. In her capacity as COO, Chan will lead the company’s engineering, program, product, supply chain, and manufacturing teams. Her appointment aligns with the vision of President and CEO Steve Girsky to streamline decision-making processes and bolster Nikola’s reputation for excellence in engineering and manufacturing. Read more >>

Arizona added 2,374 clean-energy jobs in 2022, near pre-pandemic levels

Arizona added more than 2,300 clean-energy industry jobs last year, falling just shy of the state’s pre-pandemic employment levels but matching the nation for job growth in the sector, a new report said. The annual Clean Jobs America report by Environmental Entrepreneurs – or E2 – said the bulk of the 61,583 clean-energy jobs in the state were in energy-efficiency fields, like efficient lighting, heating and insulation. But Arizona also had almost 12,000 jobs in renewable energy industries and more than 4,000 in clean vehicles. Read more >>

Phoenix gets $10 million grant to plant more trees, cool the city and fight the heat

The city of Phoenix got a ton of green earlier this week — in the form of both plants and money. The United States Forest Service awarded the city with $10 million for tree-planting efforts, officials said. They hope this will promote equitable cooling throughout the Valley. Equitable cooling is a hot topic in the sustainability world. Tree equity refers to the unequal distribution of trees throughout communities. According to data from Maricopa County, 27 people died from heat-related illnesses in the 85007 ZIP code last year. Read more >>

Amphenol Industrial Operations expands in Mesa with new solar product factory

An East Coast manufacturer continues to expand in the East Valley. New York-based Amphenol Industrial Operations, a division of Connecticut-based Amphenol Corp. (NYSE: APH), is set to open a solar product factory in Mesa during the fourth quarter of 2023. The new 58,000-square-foot space will be used for manufacturing solar junction boxes, connectors, and other advanced interconnect assemblies in support of the solar energy industry. It is expected to create up to 50 jobs. Read more >>

Climate tech company CarbonCapture partners with ASU to design regional hub

A Los Angeles-based startup is partnering with Arizona State University to design a regional carbon dioxide capture hub that could spur significant job creation and position the Grand Canyon State as a leader in the climate tech industry. CarbonCapture — which makes direct air capture machines to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere — ASU and industry partners are in discussions with the U.S. Department of Energy for potential funding to conduct an engineering and design study for a multi-site hub in the Southwest. Read more >>

Supply agreement advances domestic battery supply chain for use at Arizona KOREPlex

KORE Power, Inc. will use ENTEK lithium separators manufactured in Terra Haute, Indiana in the battery cells that the company produces at the Arizona KOREPlex, according to a supply agreement announced Tuesday. Under the agreement, KORE will purchase separators for both NMC and LFP battery cells from ENTEK when ENTEK’s Indiana facility comes online in 2025. Under the terms of the agreement, ENTEK will supply enough separators for the KOREPlex’s initial 7 GWh capacity and will allow for a second phase which could more than double that supply. Read more >>

Tempe-based Erthos raises $24 million in funding to scale large solar projects

A Tempe-based solar panel startup has raised a new round of funding and inked an agreement for a 180-megawatt solar plant in Mississippi, bringing its total projects under contract to 18 nationwide. Erthos secured $24 million in equity financing led by Capricorn Investment Group, a sustainability-focused venture capital firm that was an early backer of Tesla, SpaceX and Helion. The new round of capital will accelerate Erthos’ growth and support upcoming large scale projects, according to a company release. Read more >>

City of Phoenix named top green fleet of 2023

The City of Phoenix won the Top Green Fleet Award​ for 2023 from the National Association of Fleet Administrators (NAFA). The annual Green Fleet Awards honor organizations that make a positive impact on the environment with their groundbreaking green initiatives. “Earning the Top Green Fleet of 2023 award is a testament to our city’s commitment to sustainability and innovation, and Phoenix is honored to be named a leader among leaders,” said Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego. Read more >>

Report reveals Arizona ranks third for most new clean energy jobs in BIPOC communities

Arizona ranks third for the most new clean energy jobs in BIPOC communities, with 12,720 jobs and companies investing upward of $8 billion. That’s according to a new report from climate action advocacy organization Climate Power. The “Clean Energy Boom In Communities of Color” report also indicates that a majority of clean energy projects are in communities of color — 201 out of 272 projects tracked nationally, to be exact. Read more >>

Electric truck maker with presence in Goodyear partners to make battery cells in the US

Daimler Truck, the German company that makes electric big rigs for the U.S. market in Portland, Oregon, and has a parts distribution center in Goodyear, is in a new joint venture to manufacture battery cells in the United States. Daimler and partners Cummins (NYSE: CMI) and Paccar (Nasdaq: PCAR) said they expect to invest $2 billion to $3 billion into the Accelera joint venture, which will supply cells for electric commercial vehicles and industrial applications. Read more >>

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