Washington state legislators pitch a $15 per ton carbon fee

CARBON: Washington state lawmakers propose a carbon fee as part of a $17 billion transportation funding package. (Associated Press)

UTILITIES:
• California’s largest utility says it’s open to the idea of being split into separate electric and gas companies but warned state regulators such a move might cause customers’ rates to increase. (Utility Dive)
• A San Diego-area utility will become the first of California’s three major investor-owned utilities to introduce time-of-use rates when it rolls out the new energy prices in March. (San Diego Union-Tribune)

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RENEWABLES: Portland takes the first formal steps to create a voter-approved fund to pay for clean energy projects and green job training for the city’s low-income residents. (Portland Tribune)

EFFICIENCY: California’s largest gas distributor is joining a coalition of labor unions, real estate agents and agriculture groups pushing back against a plan to decarbonize the state’s buildings.

EPA official’s ex-lobbying firm took millions from utilities

POLITICS: A secretive group of utilities paid millions of dollars to a top lobbying firm shortly before one of its partners was named the EPA’s top air pollution regulator, documents show. (Politico)

EMISSIONS:
• Ford investigates whether incorrect computer modeling may have caused it to misstate fuel economy and emissions during government testing. (Detroit News)
• The Trump Administration’s push to weaken California’s vehicle emission standards could have a ripple effect in New Jersey and other states. (NJ Spotlight)

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Ford investigates whether emissions testing was skewed

EFFICIENCY:
• Utilities could improve participation in energy efficiency programs by using surveys and smart meter data to tailor messages to individual customers, a new report says. (Energy News Network)
• Businesses in a southwestern Michigan city can receive energy efficiency rebates through a new utility program. (ABC57)

EMISSIONS:
• Ford investigates whether incorrect computer modeling may have caused it to misstate fuel economy and emissions during government testing. (Detroit News)
• A Minnesota company helps three university campuses meet carbon-neutrality goals. (Pioneer Press)

WIND: The Ohio Power Siting Board approves a 125 MW wind project near the Indiana border.

Hydropower transmission deal includes millions for Maine

TRANSMISSION: A deal to support a transmission line carrying Quebec hydropower to Massachusetts includes millions of dollars for broadband, rate relief, electric vehicles, and other incentives for Maine. (Bangor Daily News)

ALSO: The Maine Public Utilities Commission has set a deadline of March 1 for public comments on a proposed settlement. (Bangor Daily News)

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SOLAR:
• Neighbors raise objections to a proposed solar farm that would remove trees near a Connecticut state park.

New Orleans fines Entergy for paid actors but OKs power plant

NATURAL GAS: The New Orleans City Council approves an Entergy natural gas plant while fining the company $5 million for using paid actors to influence the decision. (The Lens)

ALSO:
• Shelby County, Tennessee health officials place rules on how TVA can use wells at a natural gas plant. (Memphis Flyer)
• The majority of Tampa, Florida’s mayoral candidates oppose building a fracked gas plant and relying on fossil fuels. (Florida Politics)

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