Southeast Energy News

After record fines, TVA says nuclear plant safety culture has changed

NUCLEAR: Tennessee Valley Authority’s president says the utility has made changes after receiving record fines for safety violations at its nuclear plants. (Chattanooga Times Free Press)

POLITICS:
• In addition to determining the balance of the U.S. Senate, January’s runoff election in Georgia has high stakes for the state’s energy future, with two seats on Georgia’s Public Service Commission also on the ballot. (The Intercept)
• Newly elected Republican supermajorities in West Virginia’s state legislature take office as a rapidly growing renewables sector eats away at the state’s historic coal and gas industries. (Huntington Herald-Dispatch)

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SOLAR:
• A Nashville company with backing from Royal Dutch Shell is investing heavily in Georgia solar farms, including a recent $55 million project. (Global Atlanta)
• Hecate Energy seeks to build a 280 MW solar facility in western Virginia. (Pulaski County Patriot)
• A Florida county planning commission recommends approval of a 75 MW solar farm on an 867-acre site. (Northwest Florida Daily News)
• A county board in central Virginia recommends rezoning for a 5 MW solar farm that would mark its first utility-scale solar project. (Lynchburg News & Advance)

WIND: The Federal Aviation Administration reopens its review of a planned western Virginia wind farm after it neglected to notify some government officials and public airports about the public comment period. (Roanoke Times)

UTILITIES: Entergy used an undercover consultant to covertly advocate for its interests in electricity grid stakeholder meetings, public records reveal. (Energy and Policy Institute)

OIL & GAS:
• Southwestern Energy expands its natural gas exploration and production operations in West Virginia and other states on the Utica and Marcellus shale formations. (Parkersburg News and Sentinel)
• A coalition of 24 natural gas companies, including several operating in the Southeast, reports that it’s on track to reduce methane emissions 1% by 2025. (Natural Gas Intelligence)

PIPELINES: Young people in the college town of Blacksburg, Virginia, rally to show solidarity with tree-sitters blocking the Mountain Valley Pipeline. (WDBJ7)

ENERGY EFFICIENCY: Dominion Energy pays for energy-efficiency upgrades at 40 affordable-housing units in northern Virginia. (Patch)

TRANSITION: An eastern Kentucky city is building an ATV trail to connect with nearby communities in southwestern Virginia and West Virginia and attract tourists to replace revenue from the dwindling coal industry. (WKYT)

COMMENTARY:
• Federal policies that reflect President Trump’s climate-change have been disastrous for Florida and must be reversed, writes a newspaper editorial board. (Miami Herald)
• An editorial board questions what a Biden presidency will mean for West Virginia, a state that sourced 91% of its electricity from coal last year versus 23% nationwide. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

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