U.S. Energy News

75 mayors say they won’t enforce climate policy rollback

CLIMATE: Mayors from 75 U.S. cities pledge to double down on climate action in response to President Trump’s executive order to undo Obama-era climate initiatives, saying their cities won’t enforce the new policies. (Curbed)

ALSO: An environmental law expert breaks down President Trump’s executive order to roll back efforts to address climate change. (Vox)

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CLEAN POWER PLAN: In light of President Trump’s latest executive order, the administration is asking an appeals court to hold off on ruling whether the Clean Power Plan is legal. (The Hill)

COAL:
• The Interior Department formally lifts an Obama administration ban on new coal leasing on federal lands and suspends a review of federal coal-leasing rates. (The Hill, Vox)
• Duke Energy is suing 30 of its former insurance companies for allegedly refusing pay over $1 billion in environmental claims over groundwater contamination linked to the company’s coal-ash ponds. (Triangle Business Journal)
• A coalition of environmental groups files a lawsuit to stop the Trump administration from lifting a moratorium on new federal coal leases, calling the action “nothing short of a bailout for a dying coal industry.” (Common Dreams)

NUCLEAR:
• What the bankruptcy of Toshiba’s U.S. nuclear unit, Westinghouse Electric, means for the country’s nuclear industry. (New York Times)
• South Carolina electric utilities say they are committed to completing two nuclear reactors, regardless of Westinghouse’s bankruptcy proceedings. (Associated Press)
• Nevada’s governor said the state would consider legal action to stop the potential storage of nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain, saying leaders will “pursue all viable options to defeat this ill-conceived project, including litigation.” (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

OIL & GAS: In a party line vote opposed by Republicans, Colorado’s House passes a bill requiring oil and gas drilling rigs to be at least 1,000 feet from school boundaries. (Denver Business Journal)

RENEWABLE ENERGY: Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke tells a Fox News Radio host “there’s no such thing as clean energy,” pointing out that wind farms kill birds. (ThinkProgress)

SOLAR:
• Nevada regulators approve a proposal to give rooftop solar customers additional time to opt-in to grandfathered net metering rates, with a new deadline of July 1. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
• A “Made in Minnesota” solar panel incentive program that’s been criticized by Republican lawmakers will support 73 percent more projects in 2017 than it did in 2016, according to new government figures. (Midwest Energy News)
• The solar industry is working to improve regulations for how property-assessed clean energy (PACE) programs should operate to protect consumers. (Greentech Media)
• The public policy director of California-based Sunrun explains why the company chose to expand into Wisconsin, a state known as a battleground for solar policy. (Midwest Energy News)

STORAGE:
• Utilities like New York’s Con Edison are turning to energy storage as a cheaper and more effective way to meet surges in energy demand. (Fast Company)
• With lithium-ion batteries on the rise, companies should know whether their cobalt and lithium is coming from ethical sources. (Greentech Media)

WIND: West Virginia regulators approve a utility’s request to purchase 120 MW of power from an Indiana wind farm. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

COMMENTARY: Parts of Trump’s anti-climate executive order will be tough to justify in court, particularly the scrapping methane emissions regulations and undoing the Clean Power Plan, says the editorial board of the Los Angeles Times.

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