Changing Batteries to Change the World

The race to the next generation of batteries may change everything, making electric cars and the transition to an all-electric, 100% renewable energy economy a reality. We talk to Steve LeVine, author of “The Powerhouse,” about the race to build a better battery, and to researcher Mark Jacobson, who has authored plans for a global transition to 100% renewable energy.

If you enjoyed this episode, check out our previous episode with Mark Jacobson, which also features Goldman Prize winner Helen Slottje and Anthony Ingraffea.

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Steve LeVine is Washington Correspondent for Quartz, the mobile-first startup launched in 2012 by Atlantic Media. His book The Powerhouse: America, China and the Great Battery War will be out in paperback on January 26.  Steve is also a Future Tense Fellow at the New America Foundation and an adjunct professor at Georgetown University, where he teaches energy security in the graduate-level Security Studies Program.

photo: Enlik Mukhanova

photo: Enlik Mukhanova

Mark Z. Jacobson is a Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the Director of the Atmosphere/Energy Program at Stanford University. His plans for 100% renewable energy worldwide are featured on the website of The Solutions Project. In 2013, he received an American Geophysical Union Ascent Award for “his dominating role in the development of models to identify the role of black carbon in climate change” and the Global Green Policy Design Award for the “design of analysis and policy framework to envision a future powered by renewable energy.” He has also served on the Energy Efficiency and Renewables advisory committee to the U.S. Secretary of Energy and was invited to talk about his world and U.S. clean-energy plans on the Late Show with David Letterman.


Music in this episode includes Start Me Up from The Rolling Stones; Electricity by School House Rock; and Brighter than the Sun by Colbie Caillat.