U.S. Energy News

Activists warn Trump environmental rollbacks hit people of color hardest

EQUITY: Advocates warn the Trump administration’s decision last week to weaken environmental oversight for pipelines and other projects will disproportionately harm communities of color. (The Hill)

COAL: Appalachian organizations helping communities transition from coal economies are doubling down on their efforts as the coal industry struggles during the coronavirus pandemic. (Energy News Network)

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NUCLEAR:
• Southern Company’s Plant Vogtle nuclear project in Georgia is “highly unlikely” to meet its state deadlines and will likely face additional budget overruns, according to a local monitor. (Bloomberg)
Arizona tribal nations fear an environmental catastrophe after losing a seven-year old lawsuit aiming to close a uranium mine roughly 10 miles south of the Grand Canyon’s south rim. (Arizona Republic)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
Promoting electric vehicle charging to off-peak hours may offer an opportunity for wider use of time-of-use rates in New Hampshire. (Energy News Network)
• Xcel Energy has several programs under development in Minnesota that are designed to incentivize off-peak charging. (Utility Dive)

TRANSPORTATION: U.S. House Democrats sponsor an updated $494 billion transportation funding bill that includes $350 million for EV charging and hydrogen fueling stations. (Smart Cities Dive)

OIL & GAS:
• The number of oil rigs in the U.S. declined for the 13th-straight week, falling below 300 for the first time. (Houston Chronicle)
• Energy producers shut down about a third of the Gulf of Mexico’s crude oil and natural gas supplies as Tropical Storm Cristobal made landfall yesterday. (S&P Global)

PIPELINES:
• A new EPA rule that narrows the scope of state reviews of pipeline crossings won’t necessarily ease the path for projects because a suspended Army Corps permit is likely already delaying them. (Bloomberg Law)
• Records show a West Virginia bill increasing penalties for pipeline protests was backed by lobbyists for Dominion Energy and other natural gas groups. (The Intercept)

WIND: Colorado’s southeastern corner has enough wind potential to power the rest of the state, but lacks the high-voltage transmission that could deliver the energy to demand centers. (Mountain Town News)

SOLAR: Tesla resumes solar panel and battery work at its Buffalo Gigafactory shut down by COVID-19 as partner Panasonic says it will now end its relationship at the plant in September. (Greentech Media)

FINANCE: A new analysis suggests that, despite publicly announced climate pledges, large banks continue to support fossil fuel companies. (Grist)

UTILITIES: Consolidated Edison prepares for transformed electricity demand in New York City as power use shifts from commercial buildings to residences during the coronavirus pandemic. (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)

EFFICIENCY: Energy efficiency could play a key role in limiting energy usage as recreational marijuana growing expands in the Midwest. (Yale Climate Connections)

POLITICS:
• An up-and-coming Democratic senator from Illinois has emerged as one of Congress’ top climate “nerds.” (E&E News)
• North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper pushed carbon reduction targets and now faces criticism from the left and right as he seeks reelection. (E&E News)

CLIMATE:
• Tribes in northern Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin approach climate change adaptation with traditional values of relationship building and observation. (Yale Climate Connections)
• Massachusetts amends its climate lawsuit against Exxon, arguing that the coronavirus pandemic shows the company’s business model will not survive climate change. (E&E News, subscription required)

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ACTIVISM:
• Overwhelmingly white environmental groups have struggled to show solidarity with social justice protests without appearing hypocritical. (E&E News)
• The Buffalo man shoved and injured by police during an anti-racism protest is a longtime climate activist. (E&E News, subscription required)

COMMENTARY: A New York Times climate reporter compiles a list of books, articles and other resources linking racism and the environment

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