Turning California Green: Easier Said Than Done
September 27, 2022
No Short Circuit To The Future
California’s plan to ban the sale of gas-powered cars by 2035 means the state’s power grid is in for a massive test over the next decade. The state already faces grid issues, with rolling blackouts already occurring during one heat wave this year, when consumers were also asked to stop charging their electric vehicles at peak consumption times. According to the state energy commission, California expects to have 5.4 million passenger electric vehicles (EVs) and 193,000 medium- and heavy-duty EVs on its roads by 2030, leading EV charging to take up to 5% of electric grid capacity, up from 1% currently.
As California leads the charge towards our electrified future, the largest state economy in the U.S. will need to make a variety of infrastructure changes. The Golden State is incentivizing consumers to charge their EVs at different times and in different ways to lessen demand for electricity during peak hours. Most EV charging takes place at home as people park their cars after the evening commute, but construction of charging stations at workplaces, malls, or other destinations would allow people to top off their batteries before heading home. The state is also trying to overhaul its grid with cleaner energy sources. Fossil-fuel power plants are being retired in favor of plants using renewable energy, but permitting and development have been slow on that front.
Other, less favorable solutions to increased charging infrastructure and a stronger electricity grid include vehicle-to-grid technology or utility companies blocking charger connections to the grid to avoid overtaxing energy infrastructure. Vehicle-to-grid charging entails using EV batteries to power houses or send energy back to the grid. Luckily, the switch to EVs won’t be as immediate as…well, flipping an actual switch – experts expect the change to EVs to take place over many years since gas cars usually last for over 15 years. (WSJ, $)
Some Good News
- New prosthetic arm surfing aid tested in Bristol (BBC)
- Māori tribe secures landmark apology and compensation over colonial atrocities (Guardian)
Insanity In Izhevsk
- A gunman opened fire at a school in central Russia Monday, killing 15 people and wounding 24 others before turning the gun on himself. The casualties include 11 children killed and 22 injured.
- The incident took place at School No. 88 in Izhevsk (the capital of the Russian region of Udmurtia), about 600 miles east of Moscow. According to the governor of Udmurtia, the gunman was identified as 34-year-old Artem Kazantsev, a former psychiatric patient.
- In a video released by the Russian Investigative Committee (IC), the gunman showed up at the school with a balaclava covering his face and a T-shirt sporting a swastika. All of his gun clips had the Russian word for “hate” written on them. “I express my deep, sincere condolences to the relatives and friends of those who died as a result of the cynical and ruthless attack on the school in Izhevsk,” said IC Chairman Alexander Bastrykin. (NBC)
The Pound Takes A Pounding
- The British pound hit an all-time low compared to the U.S. dollar Monday as markets responded to new economic policy announced by Treasury chief Kwasi Kwarteng last Friday. The new policies include tax cuts that the Treasury expects will increase economic growth, but financial markets expressed worries that the cuts might increase government debt and escalate inflation.
- The pound fell to $1.0373 on Monday, just days after the Treasury’s tax-cutting policy was announced. The currency then bounced back up to $1.0857 before taking another plunge to $1.0664 when the Treasury announced a new medium-term fiscal plan would be released on November 23. $1.0373 marks the lowest point the pound has dipped to since the decimalization of the currency in 1971.
- The Conservative government’s move to cut taxes comes alongside increased government spending in order to help citizens and businesses pay for ballooning energy bills sparked by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Economists expect the 45 billion pound tax cuts, combined with 60 billion pounds in energy spending, to raise inflation, devalue the pound, and increase the cost of government borrowing. (ABC)
Additional World News
- Giorgia Meloni: Italy’s far right wins election and vows to govern for all (BBC)
- Targetting government, UK’s Labour pledges sound finances and strong public services (Reuters)
- Gunman attacks Russian military recruiter as thousands flee mobilization (WaPo, $)
- Typhoon Noru smashes into the Philippines, killing 5 and leaving villages in tatters (CNN)
- In China, home buyers occupy their ‘rotting’, unfinished properties (Reuters)
- US warnings against Putin’s nuclear threats mark a sobering moment for the world (CNN)
- ‘Huge problem:’ Iranian drones pose new threat to Ukraine (Politico)
“Loyalty to petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul.” – Mark Twain
Arizona? More Like War Zone-a!
- Representative Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) has already hinted that he may challenge Senator Kyrsten Sinema (sort of D-Ariz.) in 2024. On Monday, he turned his criticism of the lawmaker up a notch after Sinema appeared at the McConnell Center (yes, that McConnell) at the University of Louisville.
- During her appearance, Sinema lamented that politics have become “increasingly radicalized” and said she believes Republicans are “likely” to win back the House or Senate in November. Gallego responded to her comments, tweeting, “I mean you could be out there helping our candidates @SenatorSinema But my sense is that you would actually prefer the Dems lose control of the Senate and House.”
- Gallego added, “Now that I think of it. I have been traveling the state and country. Donating, raising funds and encouraging people to come out and vote and I have seen you nowhere @SenatorSinema.” Gallego has reportedly met with some of Sinema’s donors as he mulls a run against her amid frustration from her fellow Democrats. (The Hill)
The Kids Are Alright (Hopefully)
- Governor Gavin Newsom vetoed a bill that would have made kindergarten compulsory in the state. Newsom said that even though it was “laudable,” at $268 million a year, it was simply not in the already record-breaking state budget. He added, “We must prioritize existing obligations and priorities, including education, healthcare, public safety and safety-net programs.”
- Newsom has already committed billions of dollars to boost access to early learning programs. He clarified that he still believes in the importance of kindergarten enrollment, saying, “making sure all kids begin their school careers ready to learn on par with their peers is one of the most impactful things we can do to combat societal inequities.” (LAT, $)
Additional USA News
- Second middle school student dies after rowing boat capsized in an Orlando lake due to possible lightning strike (CNN)
- ‘Desperate move’: Dems’ Iowa Senate pick pushes back after kiss allegation (Politico)
- The future of abortion in Arizona under pre-statehood ban (Axios)
- Kentucky Parole Board votes to have Paducah school shooter serve out life sentence (CNN)
- ‘They were preyed upon’: immigration lawyers denounce transport of migrants (Guardian)
- Doug Mastriano’s Adrift Campaign: No TV Ads, Tiny Crowds, Little Money (NYT, $)
- Federal jury convicts QAnon believer who led charge during Capitol riot (Axios)
No Man Is An Island, But No Island Is Permanent
- Earlier this month, a new island was born in the Pacific. Its mother was an underwater volcano near the island of Tonga, which slowly oozed lava until its baby began to peek out from beneath the waves. The island quickly grew from just one acre of solid ground to eight acres in just a few weeks.
- The volcano that birthed the island is part of the Home Reef seamount and started putting out lava on September 10, says NASA’s Earth Observatory. According to the Tonga Geological Services, the newborn island reached a size of 8.6 acres stretching up to 50 feet above sea level by September 19. Unfortunately, the island isn’t unique – the Home Reef region of volcanoes has acted up in 1852, 1857, 1984, and 2006, producing islands in each year.
- The islands produced by volcanic activity like this are generally short-lived, falling back under the ocean within years. The newborn has some hope, though – one distant ancestor created by the nearby Late’iki Volcano lasted for 25 years, a long life for a tiny rock in the world’s biggest ocean. (NPR)
- LinkedIn Ran Social Experiments on 20 Million Users Over Five Years (NYT, $)
- Scientists Baffled by Perfectly Geometric ‘Polygons’ of Cyclones on Jupiter (Vice)
- See Ukrainian sergeant gift CNN anchor with coin made from Russian tank (CNN)
- Swiss voters OK plan to raise retirement age for women to 65 (WaPo, $)
- It just got harder in California to steal and then sell catalytic converters (LAT, $)
- Tennessee man catches state record-breaking 118-pound catfish (Tennessean)
Tim Hsia, the publisher of Daily Pnut, is a West Point graduate and former active duty infantry officer. Earlier this year, he cofounded The Military Veteran, an organization dedicated to helping servicemembers find meaningful civilian careers after their military service. The Military Veteran partners with large companies and startups to help them source and select fantastic veteran talent.
If you’re an employer looking to hire veterans, please let us know. If you’re a transitioning veteran or a veteran professional in NYC, please join us on 9/30 and 10/1 to build your professional network by registering for our in-person event here. This event will bring together over 200+ talented veterans and our keynote speakers include Alex Gorsky, the former CEO of J&J for 10 years, currently executive Chairman of J&J, and on the board of JP Morgan Chase, IBM, and Apple, and General David Petraeus, who led the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and served as Director of the CIA. He is a partner and investor at KKR.
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