One of Gov. Jerry Brown’s green-building directives drives up the cost of state construction projects while delivering an uncertain environmental benefit, according to a new study by the Legislative Analyst’s Office.
The study assessed Brown’s 2012 executive order directing that all state departments design new buildings in such a way that they entirely offset their energy use.
Those so-called “zero net energy” projects tend to include features that limit energy use as well as others that generate power, such as solar panels.
The analysis found that the zero net energy decree adds 17 to 29 percent to the projected cost of some new buildings.
Luxury electric carmaker Tesla this week acquired a small, Minnesota-based factory automation company, in hopes of fixing unexpected bottlenecks on its Model 3 production line. Perbix launched in 1976 and employs 150 people in a suburb north of Minneapolis. Tesla said it’s worked with the engineering firm for nearly three years, on a number of projects on the production line at its Fremont car factory and its Gigafactory in Reno. Terms of the deal were not immediately released.
In 2016, California shipped recyclables with a value of $21 million by air to Japan, the United Kingdom, and Germany. Trash worth $108 million went by rail or truck to Mexico. But $4.6 billion worth of recyclables, 15 million tons, were shipped out from California’s ports. By far the greatest share of our recyclables, 62 percent, went to China.
Seaborne exports of all commodities from California ports in 2016 totaled 63 million tons, with a vessel value of more than $89 billion. Recyclable material accounted for 24 percent of the commodities exports by weight, 5 percent by value.
Electric-car maker Tesla has reached an agreement to set up its own manufacturing facility in Shanghai, according to people briefed on the plan, a move that could help it gain traction in China's fast-growing market for electric vehicles.
The deal with Shanghai's government will allow the Silicon Valley auto maker to build a wholly owned factory in the city's free-trade zone, these people said. This arrangement, the first of its kind for a foreign auto maker, could enable Tesla to slash production costs, but it would still likely incur China's 25% import tariff.
Batteries have emerged as a critical front in China’s campaign to be the global leader in electric vehicles, but foreign auto makers and experts say it is rigging the market to favor domestic suppliers.
Tianjin Lishen Battery Co. here in eastern China recently agreed to sell its battery packs to Kia Motors for the EVs the South Korean company makes in China and is now in talks to supply General Motors , Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen , a supervisor for the Chinese company said.
But that is largely because Tianjin Lishen has little foreign competition.
Foreign batteries aren’t banned in China, but auto makers must use ones from a government-approved list to qualify for generous EV subsidies. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology’s list includes 57 manufacturers, all of them Chinese.