We Don’t Need No Stinkin’ Fossil Fuel, The Most Interesting Man In EVs, Animals Rewild Denuded Forests Better than Humans, Climate Champ–Brandon Hollinger

by | Nov 23, 2021 | Podcasts, The Climate Daily

We don’t need no stinkin’ fossil fuel, plus meet the most interesting man in EVs. Animals rewild denuded forests better than humans, and meet the electrifying climate champion, Brandon Hollinger.




Around the world, a cottage industry is growing in converting classic cars into electric vehicles. Every time a Tesla hits a tree, it’s a gift for these enthusiasts.

With a passion for the environment, some Internet research, and an uncanny ability to apply what he’s learned, Hollinger turned the garage behind his central Lancaster row house into the launching pad for the fledgling electric-vehicle-conversion business BH Electrics.

It all started for Brandon Hollinger after watching the 2006 documentary Who Killed the Electric Car? The movie follows the GM debacle where after successfully introducing EVs into the southern California market in the 1990s, it decided to recall them all and destroy them.

Hollinger got serious and in 2008 bought the 1970 Saab on eBay and combined it with some parts from a 1968 to go electric. Hollinger likes the classics. He calls his EV classic car conversions, “Future-proof styling. Timeless icons seamlessly blended with tomorrow’s innovations.” And it makes perfect sense. Most classic cars are classic for their look, not for their engines.

Check out the Customer Gallery at Amprevolt.com. There’s a Mazda Miata, a VW Bus, a Ford compact station wagon, even a Jeep and more. More proof that the fastest way to get us all in electric cars is to convert existing gas-guzzlers, not force us to buy new ones.




According to a new study published by PLOS, animals have helped to rewild two abandoned areas of farmland in Cambridgeshire, England. Animals such as jays, grey squirrels, and mice are the primary dispersal mechanism for acorns, and both areas now show over 50 percent oak coverage. Simultaneously, thrushes and smaller birds have helped distribute the seeds of hawthorn, bramble, blackthorn, and rose, which acted as natural tree-guards for the (relatively) new oaks.

Why does this study matter to us? Rewilding is a valid form of re-forestation or of foresting abandoned farmland, as well as a way to re-establish biodiversity. However, passive rewilding PATTERNS are poorly known. And we need to gain that knowledge.

The researchers combined time series of field surveys and remote sensing (“lidder” lidar and photogrammetry) to study woodland development on two farmland fields in England over 24 and 59 years respectively:

 SOMEONE’S gotta do it, right?  The New Wilderness (3 acres) abandoned in 1996, and the Old Wilderness (about 6 acres) abandoned in 1961, both adjacent to ancient woodland. Woody vegetation colonization of the New Wilderness was rapid, with 86% vegetation cover averaging 2.9 m tall after 23 years post-abandonment. The Old Wilderness had 100% woody cover averaging 13.1 m tall after 53 years, with an overstory tree-canopy (≥ 8 m tall) covering 91%. By this stage, the structural characteristics of the Old Wilderness were approaching those of neighboring ancient woodlands.

The impact: The research makes an incredibly persuasive case for “passive rewilding,” something historically sidelined by many in favor of more hands-on conservation efforts.

“Our study provides direct empirical evidence that passive rewilding has the potential to expand native woodland habitat at very low cost and within relatively short timescales,” write the authors.

Additionally, the accumulation of deadwood and other natural processes have helped to promote biodiversity, nutrient flow, and carbon storage. Passive rewilding could be good news for climate mitigation thanks to its low-impact and cost-effective nature.

DEEPER DIVE: PLOS, Live Kindly, What is PLOS?



In a paper published recently in Nature Communications, the authors, including experts from China’s Tsinghua University, the Carnegie Institution for Science and Caltech, said that most of the current electricity demand in advanced, industrialized nations can be met by some combination of wind and solar power.

Most reliable systems, which are dominated by wind power, are capable of meeting electricity requirements in the countries studied 72 to 91 percent of the time, even without energy storage, according to the study. With the addition of 12 hours of energy storage capacity, systems become dominated by solar power and can satisfy demand 83 to 94 percent of hours.

“Wind and solar could meet more than 80 percent of demand in many places without crazy amounts of storage or excess generating capacity, which is the critical point,” said co-author Steve Davis, UCI professor of Earth system science.

The team analyzed 39 years’ worth of hourly energy demand data from 42 major countries to evaluate the adequacy of wind and solar power resources to serve their needs. They found that a full conversion to sustainable power resources can be easier for larger, lower-latitude countries, which can rely on solar power availability throughout the year.

“Europe provides a good example,” said Tong, who began her work on this study as a post-doctoral scholar in UCI’s Department of Earth System Science. “A lot of consistency and reliability could be provided by a system that includes solar resources from Spain, Italy and Greece with bountiful wind available in the Netherlands, Denmark and the Baltic region.”

The researchers found that a wind and solar power system could provide about 85 percent of the total electricity demand of the United States, and that amount could also be increased through capacity overbuilding, addition of batteries and other storage methods, and connecting with other national partners on the North American continent.

DEEPER DIVE: Science Daily, Nature, UCI News



I just got to know the most interesting man in EVs today.

 (You met Elon Musk?!)

No, he might be the richest and strangest man in EVs today, but not the most interesting. No, that would be Edward Monfort. Monfort owns DIYev.com. He asked himself the question, “Have you ever thought it strange that the electric car industry is expanding, but there is no education plan in place for the future?”

And that’s why Monfort matters to all of us. He realized that nobody will know how to assemble or repair these EVs because nobody has yet thought ahead to educating regular folks (or even Internal Combustion Engine mechanics) on all aspects of electric vehicles.

His company, DIYev.com is set to change all that. According to his website, “We are preparing for the future, while still keeping a foot planted firmly in what is useful from the past.” That’s the other reason Monfort and his company matter to us. He’s not just teaching people how to assemble and repair EVs, he’s teaching them how to convert existing ICE cars, trucks and school buses into EVs.

IOW, his business model uses most of the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) parts. That way we can use the existing maintenance and repair infrastructures, while also modernizing and upgrading that same repair infrastructure. In OTHER other words, not throwing the baby out with the bath water.

Unlike Tesla or Fisker, etc., who require a special facility and specially trained technicians to repair and maintain their electric drivetrains and battery packs, using existing Original Equipment Manufacturer parts and maintenance procedures will allow DIYev.com drivetrains and battery packs to be maintained, and repaired anywhere in the world just by using the existing infrastructure. It’s simple but ingenious. 

DEEPER DIVE: DIYev, OEM explained, YouTube