U.S. Energy News

Activists ‘will be waiting’ for Keystone XL construction

PIPELINES: The chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe says activists “will be waiting” to oppose construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. (InsideClimate News)

ALSO: A former FERC chairman questions the need for new pipelines in the Northeast during a Senate committee hearing, saying the current system is adequate for “all but 12 days of the year.” (Utility Dive)

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OIL AND GAS:
• Environmental groups sue North Dakota over an air quality permit that allows for an $800 million oil refinery near a national park. (Associated Press)
• A former Colorado coal town’s shift from its fossil fuel roots could be reversed under a Trump administration plan to radically increase drilling there. (Reveal/E&E News)
• Louisiana has nearly 2,000 abandoned oil and gas wells, which pose an environmental risk. (The Advocate)

SOLAR:
• Thousands of Florida Power and Light customers pay extra on their electric bills so the utility can build solar trees across the state. (Sun Sentinel)
• Awareness about solar power grows in a Texas community as more homes install rooftop panels. (Victoria Advocate)

STORAGE: A California utility’s plan to install four large battery projects is the latest example of how storage technology is taking off amid falling solar prices and favorable state and national policies. (Forbes)

WIND:
• Attorneys for Maine Gov. Paul LePage ask a judge to dismiss a lawsuit challenging his executive order to stop issuing wind turbine permits indefinitely. (Associated Press)
• Duke Energy quietly abandons plans to purchase up to 500 MW of wind power in the Carolinas, saying the bids weren’t “economically attractive.” (Charlotte Business Journal, subscription)

NUCLEAR: A South Carolina utility recruits outside directors to investigate whether executives or board members knew about problems with a failed nuclear project. (Post and Courier)

BUILDINGS: A group of MIT researchers leads an initiative to construct modern buildings out of wood in order to reduce construction-related energy consumption. (Interesting Engineering)

NATURAL GAS: Proposals to build natural gas plants across the Midwest face opposition as renewable energy costs decline. (E&E News)

FRAC SAND: A five-year pilot project successfully transforms a former Wisconsin frac sand mine into a wild prairie. (Wisconsin Public Radio)

COAL: Ohio’s coal industry and environmental groups want millions of dollars returned to a state fund meant to pay for cleanup of retired coal mines. (Energy News Network)

UTILITIES: Arizona regulators’ rebuke of long-term utility resource plans shows how difficult it can be to plan amid rapidly changing markets. (Greentech Media)

POLLUTION: Indiana has spent at least $21 million cleaning up former gas stations once owned by Vice President Mike Pence’s family. (Associated Press)

BIOFUELS: U.S. farmers are increasingly concerned about their future under the Trump administration’s biofuels policy. (Associated Press)

POLITICS: Candidates for governor in Hawaii have differing views on the state’s energy future, especially on the role of natural gas. (Honolulu Civil Beat)

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CLIMATE: The Massachusetts Senate approves a bill that includes up to $2 billion in bonds to help the state adapt to climate change, including improving public infrastructure. (Associated Press)

COMMENTARY:
A FERC decision to increase electricity rates in New England will sabotage the region’s climate goals by helping to keep uneconomical fossil fuel plants online, says an editorial in the Boston Globe.
A Vox writer notes utility regulators in Michigan and Minnesota have faced opposition as they consider plans for natural gas plants.
Massachusetts lawmakers should vote to raise the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard, say directors at two clean energy nonprofits. (CommonWealth Magazine)

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