May 2021 Energy News
ACC Chair Lea Márquez Peterson: Modified clean energy rules back on the agenda
Arizona is at a crossroads and has an opportunity to lead the nation in a clean-energy efforts. Members of the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) have an opportunity to shape the state’s energy future while protecting ratepayers and assuring reliability. Since the May 5 ACC meeting, Márquez Peterson has written to her fellow commissioners to gauge their interest in reconsidering their final votes against the modified Energy Rules. While the group continues to hear from ratepayers on both sides of the issue, Márquez Peterson has placed the Energy Rules as modified on a future agenda to give Commissioners an opportunity to bring specific solutions to the table that assure that there are no unintended consequences for Arizona families. Read more >>
Arizona could become an electric vehicle manufacturing hub
Can Lucid Motors, Nikola and ElectraMeccanica turn Arizona into a major electric vehicle manufacturing hub? Arizona has the potential to become a massive global leader in emerging auto manufacturing. Arizona’s three vehicle producers are all startups, and they’re all engaged in electric-vehicles. The big question is whether all the companies can get commercial production up and running. After that, the big test will involve suppliers and whether Arizona can attract them in sizable numbers to transform the state into an auto manufacturing hub. The next few years could prove pivotal.
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KORE Power names Arizona as a finalist for new lithium-ion battery factory
KORE Power, a battery cell developer based in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, has three potential sites for its upcoming lithium-ion battery manufacturing facility, including in Arizona. The proposed factory would support up to 12 gigawatt hours of battery cell production in an effort to diversify the U.S. battery supply chain. The vast majority of the world’s battery cells, which end up in electric vehicles, e-bikes, e-scooters or drones, are produced in Asia. In addition to the 3,000 would-be KORE Power employees, the company estimated that the new plant would bring an additional 10,000 direct and indirect jobs to the selected region.
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Salt River Project advances solar in the desert
Salt River Project (SRP) has committed to cutting its carbon-emissions intensity by 65% by 2035 and 90% by 2050. To reach these goals, the utility company is working to retire coal-fired power plants and develop renewable energy projects. The company also recently announced that it is more than doubling its commitment to solar energy by adding 2,025 megawatts (MW) by the year 2025. As part of this 1,025MW solar increase, 450MW is enabled by an SRP commercial customer to meet its renewable energy commitments. It’s these partnerships between SRP and its largest customers that help make utility-scale solar possible in Arizona.
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Electric vehicle makers aren’t choosing Arizona by accident
In this guest column, an Arizona state senator looks at how prudent government policy can help attract high-paying jobs in the state. He points to the recent surge in advanced vehicle manufacturing. In the past few years, Arizona has begun to attract a new and important category of manufacturers — those in the advanced vehicle industry — as companies including ChargePoint, Waymo, Lucid Motors, and Nikola have set up operations. These companies are developing and manufacturing products in Arizona that represent innovative technological breakthroughs that are changing the world, and they are creating tens of thousands of high-paying manufacturing jobs here at home. Read more >>
Nikola announces collaboration to expedite zero-emission transportation
Nikola Corporation, a global leader in zero-emissions transportation and infrastructure solutions, today announced a collaboration with Total Transportation Services Inc. (TTSI), one of Southern California’s prominent port trucking companies, to expedite zero-emission transportation at the port of Los Angeles/Long Beach. The collaboration includes vehicle trials and a Letter of Intent (LOI) to order 100 Nikola Class 8 battery-electric vehicle (BEV) and fuel-cell electric vehicle (FCEV) semi-trucks. The collaboration is subject to negotiation and execution of definitive documentation acceptable to the parties.
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ElectraMeccanica breaks ground on Mesa manufacturing facility
Canadian manufacturer of environmentally efficient electric vehicles (EVs), ElectraMeccanica Vehicles Corp., recently broke ground on its first U.S. based assembly facility and state-of-the-art engineering technical center in Mesa. The expansion represents the third groundbreaking for an electric vehicle manufacturing facility in Arizona since 2019. Sitting across 18 acres of land near the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport, ElectraMeccanica’s facility will feature both a light vehicle assembly plant along with multiple labs to support vehicle, chassis and power electronics testing as well as comprehensive research facilities. The 235,000-square-foot facility will provide space for local assembly of the brand’s flagship electric vehicle, SOLO. Read more >>
ASU retains top U.S. spot for efforts toward UN sustainability goals
Arizona State University remains a national leader in addressing sustainability, according to an annual international publication of university rankings. That ranking, published by Times Higher Education magazine, has been driven by the university’s efforts on such issues as poverty and hunger, gender equality, clean water and air, climate change and quality education. For the second year in a row, ASU retained the top national spot when it comes to impacts made addressing 17 specific goals aimed at achieving a better world for 2030, known as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. These goals provide a blueprint for people and the planet, now and in the future. Read more >>
Salt River Project launches grid modernization project
Salt River Project (SRP) has selected Emerson’s digital grid solutions to optimize operations and incorporate a growing supply of distributed energy resources. Emerson is a global tech and engineering company providing innovative solutions for customers in industrial, commercial and residential markets. This project is part of SRP’s multiyear plan to address next-generation grid challenges, including managing sustainable and fast-expanding distributed energy resources such as solar panels, wind turbines and cogeneration plants, as well as handling bidirectional power flow and allowing more intermittent sources of power into the system. Emerson’s technologies and smart-grid platform will coordinate the utility’s distribution operations that provide power to more than 1 million customers in central Arizona. Read more >>
Footprint recognized as one of the country’s top, private-sector sustainability innovators
Gilbert, Ariz.-based sustainable technology firm Footprint has been ranked at No. 45 on the 2021 CNBC Disruptors list. Focused on reducing or eliminating plastics through the development and manufacturing of revolutionary technologies, Footprint is committed to eliminating single-use plastics with its plant-based fiber technology. Every year, CNBC identifies private companies whose innovations are influencing business and market competition. While technologies including AI, 5G, cloud computing and IoT are key to many companies making the 2021 Disruptor 50 list, the sectors they are upending are widespread, from financial services to health care, biotech, education, food, media, agriculture and transportation. Read more >>
First Arizona community recognized for sustainability and in top 10 in the United States
The Novus Innovation Corridor earned the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED-ND) gold certification recently from the U.S Green Building Council. Novus, a public/private partnership between Arizona State University and developer Catellus Development Corporation, is the first LEED-ND community certified at any level in Arizona. Strategically integrated with ASU’s Tempe campus along Tempe Town Lake, Novus enables companies to achieve synergies with a major university, including access to world-class research and a highly educated and skilled workforce. The 355-acre mixed-use, public-private partnership between Arizona State University and Catellus Development Corporation is located adjacent to the ASU Tempe campus. Read more >>
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