- “Mysterious craters blowing out of Russia could mean trouble for the whole planet” • In Siberia, temperature rises are causing mysterious giant craters, but more dire consequences could be in store. Permafrost melting is causing collapses of railways and roads and sinking building foundations, as powerful greenhouse gasses are released. [South China Morning Post]
- The Senate Appropriations Committee wants to save ARPA-E, the advanced energy research division President Donald Trump proposed eliminating. The House budget plan would eliminate ARPA-E, but the Senate committee’s report recommended not only maintaining the division, but also increasing its budget 8% to $330 million. [Houston Chronicle]
- A study from Aalto University found that solar energy could be used to cover between 53% and 81% of annual domestic heating energy consumption in Finland. The study considered heat that could be stored seasonally. The findings relate, in approximation, to the potentials in neighboring countries at the same latitude as well. [CleanTechnica]
- Alphabet Inc’s secretive X skunk works has another idea that could save the world. This one, code-named Malta, involves vats of salt and antifreeze. It can be located almost anywhere, has the potential to last longer than lithium-ion batteries and compete on price with new hydroelectric plants and other existing clean energy storage. [Bloomberg]
- A Dene hamlet in the Northwest Territory made history last year by becoming the first in Canada’s North to replace its old diesel generator with a combination of diesel, batteries and a solar array. It used diesel as a backup and during the winter, and use the sun for everything else. Twelve months later, things have worked out as planned. [National Post]
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