Pacific Standard: Why Millions of Chinese-Made Solar Panels Sat Unused in California Warehouses

Between 2011 and 2013, warehouses across Southern California were stuffed with millions upon millions of Chinese-made solar panels. How the panels got here, and what ultimately became of them, is one of the oddities of global trade.

“Chinese solar panels dominated tons of warehouses in Carson,” says Rafael Galante, principal consultant of L.A. Source Consulting, who witnessed the influx of solar modules from China in early 2012. “They were everywhere.”

City Lab: Where Electric Vehicles Actually Cause More Pollution Than Gas Cars

A view from the tailpipe gives EVs a clear edge: no emissions, no pollution, no problem. Shift the view to that of a smokestack, though, and we get a much different picture.

So the truth of the matter hinges on perspective -- and, it turns out, geography. That’s the sobering lesson from an incredibly sophisticated new working study by a group of economists. Using a fine-grained, county-level measure of U.S. vehicle emissions traced to tailpipes and electricity grids, the researchers mapped where gas cars and EVs cause more respective pollution. In some places electrics do so much relative harm that instead of being subsidized, as is currently the case, they should actually be taxed.

Technology Review: Supreme Court Decision Unlikely to Stall the Shift Away From Coal Plants

Despite the Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision to invalidate the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan to restrict mercury and other pollutants from existing power plants, the retirement of aging coal plants continues to accelerate.

According to a recent report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, we are entering “the largest wave of coal retirements in U.S. history,” with 23 gigawatts of coal-fired capacity expected to close this year alone and a total of 50 gigawatts by 2020.

BloombergModi Embraces the Dollar to Spur India’s Solar Power Boom

India will soon invite bids for its first dollar-linked solar power contracts, seeking to cut costs and woo investment as Prime Minister Narendra Modi targets an unprecedented expansion in clean energy.

State-owned NTPC Ltd., India’s largest power generator, will award the tenders for 500 megawatts to 1,000 megawatts of electricity in July, Tarun Kapoor, a joint secretary in India’s Renewable Energy Ministry, said in an interview in New Delhi.

The contracts will pay the rupee equivalent of the dollar tariff determined by the bidding, and NTPC will create a fund to manage the currency risk it takes on, people familiar with the matter said, asking not to be identified, as the plan isn’t public.

Green Car Reports: BMW to Make Whole Lineup Electric, With Range Extenders

German carmaker BMW may be on the cusp of the most radical transformation in its history -- one that will stun the auto industry if it comes to pass.

If a report from early this year is accurate, the company plans to convert the bulk of its product lineup to electric power over the next 10 years.

Virtually every BMW model would be powered by electric motors, with all-wheel drive and range-extending engines throughout the range.