UK government plans to slash transport emissions by decarbonizing aviation, trucks and rail
The U.K. government said Wednesday it wanted to create a net zero transport sector by the year 2050, as it looked set to publish details of a long-awaited decarbonization plan later today.
According to a news release from the government — the full report had not been made available as of lunchtime on Wednesday — a key part of the roadmap is a goal to “phase out the sale of new diesel and petrol heavy goods vehicles (HGVs) by 2040.”
If realized, this ambition — which is subject to consultation — would complement the government’s previously announced plans to stop the sale of new diesel and gasoline cars and vans by 2030 and require, from 2035, all new cars and vans to have zero tailpipe emissions.
Among other things, authorities are also targeting a net zero railway network by the middle of this century and want net zero aviation emissions by 2050.
The shift to a zero emission transport sector, the U.K.’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, will require significant investment in areas such as charging infrastructure and the development of new systems and technologies.
In a written statement to the U.K. Parliament, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “The plan published today is genuinely high ambition – technically and feasibly – for all areas of transport and notes that decarbonisation will rely, in part, on future transport technology, coupled with the necessary behavioural and societal change.”
Among those reacting to the plan were Helen Clarkson, CEO of international non-profit The Climate Group. “There is no world in which the decarbonisation of transport happens overnight,” she said, “so we await further clarity from the Government around the timelines for these plans and encourage them to look beyond ambition to action.”
Wednesday’s announcement drew a mixed response from a wide range of stakeholders within industry. Elizabeth de Jong, Logistics UK’s director of policy, said the government’s plan would “help to provide logistics businesses with confidence and clarity on the steps they must take on the pathway to net zero.”
“Consultation on proposed phase out dates for new diesel HGVs should enable business to move forwards with confidence,” she added.
Elsewhere, the Road Haulage Association said that while it supported the decarbonization of trucks, the government’s plan was “speculative, potentially damaging to business, and short on detail.”
Richard Burnett, the RHA’s chief executive, claimed that the proposal as it stood was “unrealistic.”
“These alternative HGVs don’t yet exist – we don’t know when they will and what they will cost,” he said. “It’s also not clear what any transition will look like – this is blue skies aspiration,” he added.
GE scraps plans to make giant 18 MW offshore wind turbines
GE Vernova is abandoning plans to supersize its offshore wind turbines and will instead focus on rolling out smaller “workhorse” turbines.
In March of last year, GE Vernova CEO Scott Strazik said during a GE Investor Conference that the market was receptive to larger variants of the company’s Haliade-X offshore wind turbines: “Now we are getting a very positive reception from the market with our 17 to 18 MW Haliade-X variant off of what we’re shipping this year.”
However, GE Vernova has decided to shelve that idea for the future. Parent company GE writes in its US Securities and Exchange Commission EX-99 that its Haliade-X platform has included “offerings available from 12 MW to 18 MW with estimated capacity factors ranging from 60% to 64%.” It continued:
One Haliade-X 13 MW turbine can power the equivalent of up to 16,000 European homes.
…We believe the future of our offshore wind business will be the Haliade-X 15.5 MW-250, a workhorse product.
The company made project losses in its offshore wind business last year. It expects margins to remain challenged in 2024 as it executes its Haliade-X backlog, “which will require significant cash use and working capital.” However, GE anticipates working capital dynamics and margins to improve beyond 2024.
The 800 MW Vineyard Wind I project off the Massachusetts coast consists of GE’s 13 MW Haliade-X turbines.
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Jeep’s first EV will land in the US as early as July, electric Wrangler-like Recon to follow
The first all-electric Jeep could be delivered to US customers as soon as July. According to new CEO Antonio Filosa, production of Jeep’s first EV, the Wagoneer S SUV, is expected to begin in Q2. Deliveries could happen as soon as the third quarter. Jeep’s CEO also confirmed we may see the electric Wrangler-like Recon launch by the end of the year.
The first Jeep EV could reach US buyers as early as Q3
After slashing prices amid slumping sales Friday (including up to $4K on its best-selling Grand Cherokee), Filosa admitted more needs to be done to fend off incoming competition.
Jeep’s first EV in the US, the Wagoneer S SUV, is expected to enter production in the second quarter. Filosa said the first deliveries could happen as early as the third quarter. Ahead of its official launch, Jeep is hyping the electric SUV with new teasers.
You can see Jeep’s iconic design evolving as it shifts to electric. Jeep claims the Wagoneer S will be “lightning fast,” packing 600 hp for a 0 to 60 mph sprint in 3.5 seconds.
It will be the first EV based on parent company Stellantis’ new STLA Large platform. Jeep aims for around 400 miles range, rivaling Rivian’s R1S.
Jeep also showed the first glimpse of the EV’s interior, which has plenty of buttons and digital screens. You can see a custom driver control center with Jeep’s signature Selec-Terrain toggle.
It also includes a standard dual-pane panoramic sunroof and a premium 19-speaker McIntosh audio system.
Jeep’s electric Wrangler-like Recon launching soon
Filsosa confirmed Jeep’s electric Wrangler-like Recon could launch by the end of the year, although the timing is still unclear.
We’ve already seen a sneak peek of the Recon Moab 4xe after images leaked out of a dealer event in Las Vegas.
The Recon will be a “rugged and fully capable electric SUV” inspired by the off-road Jeep Wrangler. Previous head of Jeep North America, Jim Morrison, said the Recon EV “has the capability to cross the mighty Rubicon Trail.” Not only that, it will “reach the end of the trail with enough range to drive back to town and recharge,” Morrison claimed.
Filosa confirmed the Recon will also be based on the STLA Large platform, suggesting at least 600 hp is likely.
The platform serves between 85 and 118 kWh battery pack options with up to 500 mi (800 km) range for sedans. It will also come with 400V and 800V options.
Stellantis claims the platform includes “extreme power,” claiming it will “outperform any of the existing Hellcat V-8s.” More powerful models can sprint from 0 to 62 mph (0-100km/hr) in the 2-second range, according to Stellantis.
According to the new UAW agreements, an electric Jeep Wrangler is also expected to launch, but not until 2028. Jeep’s best-selling Grand Cherokee will also get an all-electric option around 2027.
Source: Detroit News
Podcast: Tesla Model 3 Performance refresh, $RIVN earnings, new EV models, and more
On the Electrek Podcast, we discuss the most popular news in the world of sustainable transport and energy. In this week’s episode, we discuss the new Tesla Model 3 Performance refreshed, Rivian’s earnings, new EV models being unveiled, and more.
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Here’s the live stream for today’s episode starting at 4:00 p.m. ET (or the video after 5 p.m. ET):
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