Buffett Buys BYD's Battery Brain Trust

Buffett Buys BYD's Battery Brain Trust
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In the midst of financial turmoil elsewhere, a vote of confidence went out Tuesday to the Chinese battery manufacturer and automaker, BYD, when MidAmerican Holdings, a division of Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway, announced a $230 million investment in the company.

That gives MidAmerican a 10 percent stake in BYD, with the stated goal of developing storage devices for solar and wind energy, according to Bloomberg News, as well as improved battery technology for electric vehicles.

As Keith Bradsher notes in The Times today, one of the chief limitations of solar and wind is the inability to store the energy generated for those times when the wind isn't blowing, or the sun isn't shining.

The move also gives MidAmerican, a holder of several electric utility companies in the United States, a stake in electric car development (BYD is planning to mass produce a hybrid electric vehicle by the end of the year).

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