Biden appoints Democratic Richard Glick as the new FERC head

Barely a month into his Presidency, Joe Biden has shaken up things in the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). He has appointed a fellow democrat, Richard Glick, as the new chair of the federal agency.

Glick has been an opponent of most of the agency’s policies spelled out during Trumps’ tenure, and Biden has named him in line with the changes his administrations is advocating for. During Trump’s rule, FERC’s policies were not clean-energy friendly. As a regulatory authority, it hindered the efforts of the green energy sector.

Clean energy groups have applauded Glick’s appointment naming it a crucial early phase in the implementation of a Biden supporter on energy and climate push at the top position. As an authority figure in the federal agency, Glick will oversee that regulatory authorities bring sustainable change in interstate electricity transmission as well as natural gas networks.

Before his appointment, Glick served as a director in charge of Avangrid Renewables and Iberdrola. He was also a senior advisor for the Democrats on the Committee of Senate on Energy and Natural Resources. He succeeds James Danly, a Republican, who has worked in the position for barely three months. Before Trump appointed Danly to the chair, long-term Republican chair Neil Chatterjee served in the post.

Glick has previously expressed his dissatisfaction with the previous regime’s policies on several occasions. For instance, he opposed the FERC minimum offer price rule that reduced the competitiveness of state-subsidized energy network under the Pennsylvania, Jersey, Maryland (PJM) Power pool.

During a December 2019 meeting, he said, “What we are doing here, and we are doing it on purpose, is making it very difficult for state-preferred resources to clear in the capacity market.”

He also condemned the New York grid operator NYISO’s buyer-side mitigation rules and the endorsement of ISO New England’s capacity and fuel security market designs. The latter’s designs received a lot of backlash from federal lawmakers who thought they undermined clean energy’s efficiency as a grid source.

Republicans are still the majority voters in FERC after the agency retained Danly and Chatterjee and added a third member, Mark Christie. Two democrats fill the five-member group, lick and Allison Clements. Voting in favor of Democrats will need a lot of work.

According to Jeff Dennis, a senior advisor at Advance Energy Economy, one of the republicans has to vote in favor of policies backed by Democrats to change earlier policies. ” It would require at least 3 votes if it were to issue anything on its own to step back on the strategy,” said Dennis. “Right now, we don’t know where the third vote lies.”

FERC has had some pretty good decisions. One of the policies that attracted massive support was reforming policies to upscale the expansion of transmission grids to permit solar power and wind to increase. Expansion of these grids will enable the US to achieve its zero-emission targets.

The Electric Power Supply Association (EPSA) has applauded Biden’s choice. “We have enjoyed a great partnership with now-chairman Glick, and together with all the FERC commissioners, we hope to continue the discussion,” said Todd Snitchler, EPSA’s CEO. “EPSA will continue to provide market-based solutions that allow all resources to compete to reduce emissions at the least cost without undermining reliability.”


Volkswagen to use its MEB Batteries to build an electric boat in partnership with Australian Yacht-builder, Silent Yacht

Volkswagen has been working with Silent Yacht since 2019. Their project aims at building an electric yacht, which will use VW’s Modularer Electrobaukasten (MEB) platform. The electric boat will hit the ocean in 2022, according to media reports.

The electric boat, known as Silent Yacht 50, will not be the Australian builder’s first alternative-energy yacht. In 2009, Heike and Michael Kohler, the founders of Silent Yachts, launched their first solar-powered yacht. This yacht uses solar energy to propel the boat and power all equipment on the ship. The boat, Solarwave 46, has been a successful creation, with over 400 employees on board. According to Volkswagen, using the MEB means “maintenance and servicing are reduced compared to a conventional yacht, as the electric drive system is less susceptible to repair than conventional engines.”

The batteries, inverters, and electric motors used in the Silent Yacht 50 will be sourced from Volkswagen. Few changes will be done on the inverter to be programmed to suit a ship’s power needs. Alterations on the software will also go a long way in ensuring interfaces are compatible with the Yacht. Up to six batteries with a total output of 500kiloWatts will be used on this boat.

This project is an indication that even in the ocean, the use of clean energy is possible. VW said this is proof that “driving pleasure, long ranges, quiet cruising, and clean mobility is also possible on the high seas.” The boat will have a back-up diesel generator onboard to counter power shortages in case of emergencies.

The Silent Yacht will be designed by the Spanish automobile designer, Cupra. The company, which is a subsidiary of Volkswagen, is headquartered in Abrera, Spain. The team at Cupra “had to think in completely different terms of dimensions, proportions, and surfaces,” said Volkswagen. The results are promising, with the yacht bringing a sleek model ready to hit the waves as soon as possible. After launching the Silent Yacht 50, the ship-builder will scale up production in the coming years to see an annual target of not less than 50 ships.

Other motor manufacturers embracing the EV boats include BMW and Toyota. Toyota partnered with Yanmar to come up with an electric boat that uses Toyota’s Mirai powertrain. BMW partnered with an electric boat manufacturer, Torqeedo, to launch an electric yacht. The German boat maker used BMW’s i3 and i8 electric car modules to power the new boat. Lamborghini has partnered with an Italian yacht maker to build a luxury yacht priced at $3 million. The yacht, Tecnomar for Lamborghini 63, adds to the company’s high-end automobiles, this time providing a luxurious experience in the ocean.


iQSTEL to manufacture Alternet Systems Revolt Electric Motorcycle’s Proprietary Electric Vehicle Battery

An agreement between IoT Labs and MODUS Group marks the beginning of a collaboration between iQSTEL to manufacture Alternet Systems Revolt Electric Motorcycle. IoT Labs is a Technology Division subsidiary of iQSTEL, whereas MODUS GROUP engages in industrial design and engineering with Alternet Systems. Inc. The agreement’s importance is to facilitate designing and to develop an electric motorcycle for the Revolt Electric Motorcycle for Alternet Systems, Inc.

The collaborations involve two heavyweights. For instance, the patented ideas and solutions in the design world accredited to MODUS are over 200. On the other hand, IoT is in the same league with giants such as Generic Electric, Amazon, and Apple, having won awards for its technology innovations, which offer solutions to existing problems changing lives in the process.

So far, iQSTEL Inc. is in 13 countries, making it global, and offers Fintech, technology, and telecommunication services. Industries benefitting from their services include electric vehicles, telecommunications, financial, chemical, and liquid fuel distribution. Whether it is Blockchain Platform’s Settlement & Payments Marketplace or Mobile Number Portability Application MNPA, it never disappoints. In IoT, it is an ideal choice for Smart Tank Platform, Smart Gas Platform, and Smart Electric Vehicle Platform. It also comes in handy when looking for money remittance, VISA debit card, iQ batteries, omnichannel marketing, Cloud-PBX, 4G, 5G NETWORK, VoIP, and SMS.

In addition to IoT Labs, it also has other subsidiaries, including itsBchain, Global Money One, SMSDirectos, QGlobal SMS, SwissLink, and Etelix. They help the company deliver all their various products and services globally. Its operational methodologies are B2B and B2C.

What does the collaboration between the two involved parties entail? They acknowledge the existence of technology by the name HD Thin Film Lithium Battery. By the end of the agreement, they want to have developed an electric vehicle battery using the same. They are also not turning a blind eye to the possibility of entirely new technology. As a result, they are conducting research and development, searching for new ideas regarding batteries. Some of their R&Ds will revolve around Nano and Hemp-based batteries.

It is not the first time the two units are working together. On the contrary, before even the existence of this new agreement, the duo was in yet another one. The previous one is about Smart EV solutions. The solution’s marketing will fall entirely in the hands of IoT Labs responsible for making sure it reaches the global EV industry. They have a schedule for the same, and going by it; there are high chances of its prototype as early as July 2021.


What one would expect from the Upcoming Maruti Rs 7 Lakh Electric Car

For some time now, many people have been expecting some news from Maruti regarding electric vehicles. The company has been planning to introduce their EVs that would adopt the WagonR design. Some sources say that Maruti has given up on this new market even before trying it, but people are still hopeful given that it promised it would commence as soon as the infrastructure became ready. There is light at the end of the tunnel, given the long wait, since there is an upcoming Maruti Rs 7 Lakh Electric Car. Here are some expectations.

There are high chances that Maruti knows what its competitors are already offering. Logically, they would choose to provide just that or something even better to be at an advantage. At the moment, most electric vehicles out there take over 6 hours to charge. If the WagonR EV wants to have the upper hand in the market, then there are high chances it will have a shorter charging time. It would also emulate the Nexon EV that has a fast-charging option. After all, this EV takes about an hour to charge fully when using the Tata Power Fast Charging stations.

When on a full charge, its range will most likely fall within the 250 km range. Its lead in charging time will play a huge role in determining its range numbers. As of now, Nexon EV has the least, which is 312 km, whereas Mercedes-Benz EqC has the most, which is 430 km. It wouldn’t come as a surprise if the upcoming Maruti Rs 7 Lakh Electric Car offered extra features such as wireless charging and connected car technology. One should also expect a regenerative braking feature. It is one way of getting on par, if not ahead of its competitors, since it gives it extra range numbers.

Since Maruti is already good at it, the style won’t differ from the existing ones. For instance, the exterior will be more or less the same, with the only slight difference being graphics. After all, Maruti might choose to add them to its body for it to stand out. There will also be the exterior, which will most likely remain the same. However, it goes without saying that there will be extra space at the console’s center. That’s for an apparent reason, which is the electric vehicle won’t need a gear knob. So far, it is not yet out. However, the Upcoming Maruti Rs 7 Lakh Electric Car could see the light of the day soon. Once it is out, one will see what the company has to offer its customers. Whether it will change how people see electric vehicles also remains a mystery.


Latest Arizona renewable energy targets stipulated by the GOP legislators

Arizona lawmakers are planning to dethrone the state resource regulation committee of the authority to demand the electricity utilities to provide specific percentages of power from renewable energy sources. Similar proposals in the House and Senate are halting the Arizona Corporation Commission from implementing the proposal that would need the state to obtain 50% of its power from renewable energy sources in the next fourteen years and 100% in the next three decades.

The commission developed regulations requiring the state to shift to renewable energy in the next five years and prepare the public for full transition in a short period. These moves had been agreed upon by the Court of Appeal one decade ago. However, the Supreme Court overruled the decision questioning its justification. The lawmakers’ strategic act to halt the commission’s plan of transitioning the nation to the generation of electricity from solar, wind, and other renewable energy sources is frustrating. While the nation is preparing to switch away from fossil-fuel power production, it appears to be controversial when the legislators are stripping the commission of its authority to venture the renewables.

Additionally, members of the commission are not in agreement over the proposal. Some members referred to the commission’s initial purpose, which is to supervise the provision of services like water and power to the public by awarding selected utilities to provide them as monopolies. One of the lawmakers articulated that the commission has gone overboard by requesting some unreasonable rates from these utilities and instituting some policies without the constitutional authorities’ involvement.

The legislator exemplified his point by referring to the July 2020 Arizona Supreme Court ruling where the court was under pressure to consider the commission’s powers as the reason for the way it was conducting business. The ruling reiterated that setting rates like these because of some power vested in the commission required the Legislature’s involvement and not some authority implementing the policies that suit the commission.

Moreover, the constitution’s permissive authority does not mandate the commission authority to create a carbon emissions policy by itself. The commission is expected to recommend the policies or use a member of the House to present its proposals before pursuing these policies. Democrat Anna Tovar stated she is against the move to strip the commission of its power to establish renewable energy standards. She explained that clean and renewable energy steer the businesses in Arizona, and that is why the commission is compelling these utilities to upgrade their standards.


Biden’s energy nominee has investments in the electric vehicle company

Joe Biden’s nominee for Secretary of Energy, Jennifer Granholm, owns not less than $1 million of stock in electric vehicle and battery development, which will be going public this year. Granholm was Michigan’s first female governor some time ago and has become part of the Proterra board, being a member for the last four years.

Granholm has shares exceeding $2 million in the stock of the company. This data came from a financial disclosure statement submitted before her consideration to take office in question. Proterra explained that it would be going public via a merger organized with a unique purpose acquisition company known as ArcLight Clean Transition. The agreement will be effective before June after the shareholders of ArcLight authenticating this deal. Moreover, the company will now list among the traders on the Nasdaq stock market.

Granholm will be resigning from her position on the Proterra board, although she may associate with the company’s public dealings provided the deal is approved. The ethics disclosure that she signed requires her to sell off her shares once they become active, and she has been allocated a grace period of six months.

This concept means that she can maintain her ownership of the stock until the company becomes public. The former ethics lawyer, Richard Painter, stated that it would be best if she were out of the shares plan before assuming the office to maintain ethical standards. The head of the ethics counsel at Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, Virginia Canter stated that the company might have some bureaucratic regulations hindering the executive’s shares’ divestment into other projects.

However, the Biden transition team and Proterra representatives did not address the nominee’s stocks’ issues. Granholm can divest her stocks, which would involve her dissociation from the company’s activities after entering the office stipulated by the Biden transition team. Granholm’s financial disclosure indicates that her investment is in Proterra only.

Apart from her stocks in Proterra, Granholm and her husband have shares in other companies like Duke Energy, where they are at a maximum of $30000, First Solar, where they are above $50000; and Albemarle, where the shares are within $10000. The family has heavily invested in clean energy programs and shares because they are the new high-performing stocks in the American market. The executive has enough time to either divest her shares or sell them before she can be declared fit for holding a government office by the US laws.