Kevin’s Daily Digest, 4/19/16

Another rough day for coal, teething pains for Powerwall, your morning climate change depressive, Na-na-na-na-Na-na-na-na “Batwind,” and more.

The Daily Digest, published Monday-Friday, focuses on the latest news in solar, storage and electric vehicles. For more follow me on Twitter @kkchristy.

A rough day for coal: Midwest utilities retire 2,000 MW (UtilityDive). 2,000 MW of coal-fired capacity were retired in the Midwest region in a single day last Friday.

First Grid-Scale Rail Energy Storage Project Gets Environmental Approval From BLM (GTM). At $4,400/kWh (if the cost numbers are correct), this mechanical storage technology has quite a distance to go to be economic.

Is the Luster of Tesla’s Powerwall Already Fading? (GTM). Some teething pains for Powerwall in the form of fan noise and installation complexity. Plus, a look into Powerwall’s warranty terms.

Paris Climate Pact: Too Little, Too Late? (Bloomberg NEF). (Trigger warning: may induce depressive state.)

Highest Carbon Tax in Oil Nation Prods Statoil to Try `Batwind’ (Bloomberg). The world’s highest carbon tax rate prompts the Norwegian state oil company to build battery-backed wind to power offshore rigs.

Solar is now cheaper than coal, says India energy minister (ClimateHome). The coal death spiral continues.

Will LA’s historic gas leak knock Hollywood’s lights out this summer? (UtilityDive). Unfortunately, structural change from the Aliso Canyon leaks may start with blackouts in SoCal this summer.

Why Is China Still Building New Coal Plants? (Cleantechnica). Turns out the answer is that loose credit is financing plants that are likely to be under-utilized or stranded assets. Not necessarily the climate bugaboo that “China is building x coal plants a week!” fearmongering would suggest.