It’s shark week! Or ‘spark’ week? Today we’re bringing you an episode of How to Save a Planet, in which Shayle steps into the shoes of a Shark Tank-style judge.

This episode is all about (drum-roll please): Storage!

…Exciting, right? Ok, we’ll prove it to you. Each day, more and more of our electricity comes from intermittent renewables like wind and solar. To balance out our electric grid in the future, we’ll need new ways of storing extra energy, so we can still turn on our lights when the wind isn’t blowing and the sun isn’t shining. This week, with help from Dr. Leah Stokes and Shayle Kann, we explore the wild world of energy storage, from a hidden underground lair to a piping hot thermos full of poison. And did we mention it’s a gameshow?


  • Dr. Leah Stokes, Professor of Climate and Energy Policy at University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Shayle Kann, Climate Tech Investor at Energy Impact Partners
  • Len Greene, Director of Government Affairs and Communications, FirstLight Power
  • Curtis VanWalleghem, CEO of Hydrostor
  • Dr. Cristina Prieto, Professor of Engineering at the University of Seville

Calls to Action

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This episode of How to Save a Planet was produced by Daniel Ackerman. The rest of our reporting and producing team includes Kendra Pierre-Louis, Rachel Waldholz and Anna Ladd. Our supervising producer is Matthew Shilts. Our editor is Caitlin Kenney. Our intern is Janae Morris. Sound design and mixing by Peter Leonard with original music from Emma Munger. Our fact checker for this episode was James Gaines.

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Solar Power International and Energy Storage International are returning in-person this year as part of RE+. Come join everyone in Anaheim for the largest, B2B clean energy event in North America. Catalyst listeners can receive 15% off a full conference, non-member pass using promo code CANARY15. Register here.