A year ago today, T. Boone Pickens, founder and chairman of BP Capital Management and oil tycoon, revealed his Pickens Plan, which called for wind farms to replace natural-gas power plants, freeing the natural gas for powering cars and trucks, all in an effort to reduce imports of oil (and probably to find new markets for domestic natural gas). In support of that plan, Pickens signed a deal for 667 wind turbines for an enormous 4,000-megawatt wind farm to be built in the Texas Panhandle.
Now that plan is in shambles. Bad credit markets and a lack of transmission lines for the wind turbines have led him to scrap the panhandle project, at least for now, he confirmed today. But he still has to do something with all of those turbines he’s ordered. “I’m committed to 667 wind turbines and I am going to find projects for them,” he said in a statement.
During the past year, he’s also backed off some from his plan to switch to natural-gas cars, which has been widely criticized as impractical, focusing instead on pushing for a fleet of natural-gas tractor trailers.
Lack of transmission is turning out to be a major impediment for wind farms. For example, most of the applications for 67,000 megawatts of wind farms in the Midwest are stuck waiting in line because of a lack of grid connections. (See “Lifeline for Renewable Power.”)
The gene-edited pig heart given to a dying patient was infected with a pig virus
The first transplant of a genetically-modified pig heart into a human may have ended prematurely because of a well-known—and avoidable—risk.
Meta has built a massive new language AI—and it’s giving it away for free
Facebook’s parent company is inviting researchers to pore over and pick apart the flaws in its version of GPT-3
Saudi Arabia plans to spend $1 billion a year discovering treatments to slow aging
The oil kingdom fears that its population is aging at an accelerated rate and hopes to test drugs to reverse the problem. First up might be the diabetes drug metformin.
The dark secret behind those cute AI-generated animal images
Google Brain has revealed its own image-making AI, called Imagen. But don't expect to see anything that isn't wholesome.
Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review
Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.