Elon Musk’s Plan to Build the World’s Biggest Battery Exposes Coal Divide

Tesla CEO's solution to Australia's energy crisis has widened the political rift.

July 14, 2017 11:32 am
Coal Divide in Australia
Elon Musk has a plan to fix South Australia's failing power grid but he's made it clear that it doesn't involve coal. (Ian Waldie/Getty Images)

Elon Musk doesn’t have the energy to debate coal supporters.

Tesla’s CEO has promised to use his company’s technology to help Australia’s energy woes, but Musk has made it clear that coal will not be involved. The plan clashes with a government commitment to incorporate coal as an energy mainstay.

Earlier this year, Elon Musk pledged to build what would be the world’s largest battery to store electricity generated by solar and wind farms. Using Tesla technology, Musk wants to stop the blackouts plaguing South Australia’s power grid. Yet, the clean energy mission has gotten push back from some politicians, according to Bloomberg.

“Coal doesn’t have a long-term future,” Musk said to reporters in Australia last week. “The writing’s on the wall.” Australia’s Energy minister Josh Frydenberg has voiced skepticism over the viability of Tesla’s Powerpack system and opposed backing away from coal.

A majority of Australia’s energy is currently supplied by coal because it’s a cheap source, but Bloomberg reports there’s growing support for clean energy. The country’s reliance on fossil fuels makes it difficult for the country to keep up with its pledge to reduce carbon emissions, as well.

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