The future of electric vehicles and energy on the Iron Range
Aaron Brown discusses electric vehicles, electrification and efficient energy storage on the Iron Range.
IRON RANGE — "Within the decade, electric vehicles will become mainstream — even here on the Iron Range.”
Aaron Brown talked with Heidi Holtan on the Wednesday Morning Show about his latest piece, “Saving our energy for the future.”
Brown writes and speaks about the Iron Range often. As he writes his nonfiction history of former Hibbing Mayor Vic Power, he finds parallels to the same issues we face today. Check out his KAXE history podcast of the same subject, Power in the Wilderness.
"People who owned horses resisted the change, both out of custom and to protect their existing investment. Early automobiles were unreliable and the roads weren’t built for them yet, which caused some to hold off on buying them."Aaron Brown
“In the early 1900s, the adoption of gas-powered automobiles defied partisanship. Democrat and Republicans alike became excited to own one of these interesting contraptions, even though most people couldn’t afford one at all.
"That’s where we are with electric vehicles today.”
Brown likens the change between horse and automobiles to the change of gas-powered cars and electric vehicles.
"People who owned horses resisted the change, both out of custom and to protect their existing investment. Early automobiles were unreliable and the roads weren’t built for them yet, which caused some to hold off on buying them. But public and private investments improved both cars and roads, unleashing mass adoption."
It’s not just electric vehicles. Brown writes about charging stations and the need for energy storage.
“This is where the Iron Range should be most receptive to electrification. It’s in our interest," Brown writes.
“New iron-air batteries, such as ones developed by the company Form Energy, use pure iron to store energy. Rust stores energy in the iron and then chemicals release it when needed. Vast amounts of iron ore would be needed for large scale adoption of this technology, which could easily be built and used right here on the Mesabi.”
Listen to the conversation above.