When utilities make mistakes, who should pay?

UTILITIES: A California case is part of a broader pattern of utilities across the U.S. seeking to pass the costs of their mistakes onto customers instead of shareholders. (New York Times)

BIOFUELS: Conservative Midwest politicians are increasingly turning on EPA chief Scott Pruitt for weakening ethanol mandates. (Politico)

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POLLUTION: U.S. district court judges in Maryland and New York say the EPA must force five upwind states to limit smog pollution to comply with a Clean Air Act provision. (The Hill)

TRANSMISSION: Central Maine Power signs a contract with Massachusetts electricity distributors that sets prices for a proposed $950 million transmission line to deliver hydropower from Canada to New England.

Puerto Rico’s grid remains vulnerable as hurricane season approaches

GRID: Puerto Rico’s grid is in still in worse shape than it was before Hurricane Maria, raising the threat of blackouts as another hurricane season approaches. (Vox)

POLITICS: Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe, a close ally of EPA administrator Scott Pruitt, suggests Pruitt should step down because of ongoing ethical scandals. (The Hill)

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OIL AND GAS:
• House Republicans push a proposal to impose large fees on states that oppose offshore oil and gas drilling by charging them at least a tenth of the estimated government revenue that would have been generated.

Under Trump, corporations increasingly worried about climate change

CLIMATE: Climate change is a growing concern for the nation’s top companies, beating out other economic concerns, according to an analysis of earnings calls. (Bloomberg)

POWER PLANTS:
• The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission unanimously says closing uneconomic coal and nuclear plants does not pose a threat to the U.S. power grid, putting it at odds with the Trump administration. (Reuters)
• American Electric Power’s CEO says any plan to stabilize nuclear and coal plants should be reviewed by utilities to protect ratepayers from rising costs. (E&E News)

***SPONSORED LINK: Join the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE) and Host, Puget Sound Energy, for the West Coast Energy Management conference and expo, June 20-21 in Seattle. Use code EMC18CO at checkout for $200 reduced conference registration.***

SOLAR: A Nevada utility could soon break the record for the lowest price for solar energy in the nation.

Maine regulators deal setback to offshore wind project

WIND: Citing concerns about rates, Maine regulators will reconsider a previously negotiated contract for a proposed offshore wind farm; developers say the decision won’t necessarily prevent the project from moving forward. (Portland Press Herald)

ALSO: The decision underscores how Maine, which once sought to be a leader on offshore wind, has fallen behind other New England states. (Portland Press Herald)

***SPONSORED LINK: The 2018 Renewable Energy Conference: A Leadership Forum on Energy Policy, June 26 in Poughkeepsie, New York will feature IBM’s Dr. John Kelly. Don’t miss the premier renewable energy conference on the East Coast! Register today!***

SOLAR:
• A new report predicts a steep drop in solar installations in Massachusetts in part because of caps on net metering.

EPA seeks to have a lighter touch on oil and gas enforcement

OIL AND GAS: In a turnaround from the Obama administration’s focus on the oil and gas industry, an EPA memo says the agency is looking to give states more control over pollution enforcement as part of a strategy to emphasize voluntary compliance. (E&E News)

GRID: Experts say the Trump administration’s plan to bail out struggling power plants won’t protect the grid from hackers. (Reuters)

***SPONSORED LINK: The 2018 Renewable Energy Conference: A Leadership Forum on Energy Policy, June 26 in Poughkeepsie, New York will feature IBM’s Dr. John Kelly. Don’t miss the premier renewable energy conference on the East Coast! Register today!***

SOLAR:
• Solar continues to outpace natural gas in new energy capacity in the U.S., with 2.5 gigawatts installed in the first quarter of this year, according to a new report.