Canary media is an independent, non-profit newsroom covering the transition to clean energy and solutions to the climate crisis.
Yes, the world is hooked on fossil fuels, but six Canary Media’s reporters and writers singled out one development that makes them particularly hopeful about the energy transition.
The solar PV revolution is here — and eating away at fossil fuels every day
Eric Wesoff – When I started covering solar in 2004, solar modules cost just over $4 per watt. A decade later, in 2014, the industry had already driven costs down to an astonishing 70 cents per watt. This year, solar modules in China flirted with just 10 cents per watt, an astoundingly low figure in the eyes of this grizzled energy reporter.
The economics are on the side of climate solutions
Jeff St. John – The core technologies for the first phase of the energy transition — solar, wind, batteries and heat pumps — are getting so affordable that demand for them will soon outweigh the institutional inertia that stands in their way.
Heat pumps keep proving how much better they are than gas alternatives
Alison F. Takemura – Heat pumps are like Taylor Swift: I hear about them everywhere these days, and even though they’ve been around for many years, their popularity keeps expanding. Heat pumps are megastars for the climate, allowing building owners to jettison their fossil-fired systems for clean, electric ones that are two to four times as energy-efficient.
Climate-focused media continues to raise the bar
Maria Virginia Olano – The media industry has been hard-hit by layoffs recently, including many climate journalists. But despite these headwinds, there’s been good news in independent climate media in 2023 — something I think we can continue to be optimistic about next year.
Major steps toward mitigating emissions from cargo shipping
Maria Gallucci – Big cargo ships transport virtually everything we buy and use. The diesel-guzzling behemoths are also major climate polluters; they’re responsible for about 3 percent of the world’s annual greenhouse gas emissions.
Energy storage promised big things in 2023, and it delivered
Julian Spector – Energy storage is essential to balancing out grids where renewable generation is surging. And this year, in certain early-mover states like California, Hawaii and Texas, batteries had a number of successes that demonstrate the tech is ready for the big time.