What Matters This Week: Solar’s Sugar Daddy, Terrafugia’s Flying Car
1. Solar Sugar Daddy: During his Saturday address, President Obama lavished an astonishing $2 billion in loan guarantees upon two solar companies. This upended the administration’s seedling strategy with renewables — a few million for algae research here, a few million for efficient buildings there — without choosing winners. No question, then, that Spanish firm Abengoa is a favorite horse, receiving $1.45 billion for its plans to build 250 megawatts of solar concentrators outside Phoenix, Arizona.
2. This Week’s Reason to Hate BP: The British oil company is falling far short of its promises in cleaning up the epic leak in the Gulf of Mexico. Since April 20, “BP has skimmed or burned about 60 percent of the amount it promised regulators it could remove in a single day,” the Washington Post reports.
3. Bulldog Bingaman: If any climate bill gets passed this year, it will probably be thanks to the tireless backroom efforts of Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) Politico reports how the chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources committee has quietly gained the support of some Republicans for a proposal to place a cap on emissions from power plants, without ever stepping in front of a camera to take credit.
4. Recession? Don’t Tell the Propellerheads. Americans bought almost 10,000 small wind turbines last year (100 Kw or under), growing the market by 15 percent even as the recession held the country in its chilly grip. Call it retail activism, call it a clever use of subsidies, but the end result is more than 20 megawatts of clean, domestic electricity.
5.Finally, a Flying Car: Terrafugia is taking orders at $10,000 a pop for its “roadable aircraft.” With fold-up wings and a top cruising speed of 115 mph (in the air), this might be the wonderbug we’ve all been waiting for.
Article by David Ferris, appearing courtesy Matter Network.
photo: Observe The Banana
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