Opinion

The Energy Gang podcast: Saving Build Back Better

The team also discuss EVs and the growing problems that clean energy is currently facing

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President Biden's climate agenda has been reformed, and with the Build Back Better Act in a stalemate, should Americans give up hope on expecting anything to come of it?

To discuss this and more, Ed Crooks is joined on the show this week by returning guest Dr. Melissa Lott from Columbia University, and Robbie Orvis from Energy Innovation, who makes his Energy Gang debut.

The Build Back Better Act is up first. There’s a glimmer of hope on the horizon for the climate policies within the climate package. How much of the package will be saved and is there anything in it that’s different from before?

Next, the gang looks at EVs. With the lack of federal climate action, states have now taken it upon themselves to make some policy changes within their own borders. New York, New Jersey, and Oregon all have taken the initiative within the past few months by pushing for cleaner energy and policies that could help with EV demand. Is this the natural evolution of policymaking when the “trickle-down effect” halts progress?

Also, the team discusses the growing problems that clean energy is currently facing. The cost of inputs, battery raw materials, and the waste created by clean energy equipment including solar panels, wind turbines, and electric cars when they come to the end of their useful lives are causing issues. Can recycling be the solution or part of the answer at least? What does lithium-ion battery recycling look like? Who is currently recycling old EV batteries?

The free electrons are super charged this week. Ed wonders why festival owners are turning down a possible renewable energy project, Melissa wants to talk carbon-free beef, and Robbie’s been exploring the most overlooked parts when buying a hybrid car – chip shortages are throwing a spanner in the works.

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