Western Energy News

Arizona clean energy plan could be a boon for battery makers

GRID: An emerging plan in Arizona that requires 80 percent of the state’s electricity to come from renewables by 2050 could be a major opportunity for large battery makers because of energy-storage mandates. (Bloomberg)

OIL AND GAS:
• A Houston drilling company involved with a deadly rig explosion last month in Oklahoma reported a bigger-than-expected quarterly loss. (Reuters)
• Anglers and environmentalists in Colorado say the Trump administration’s plan to reshape BLM’s lease approval process, will “hand over public lands to the oil and gas industries.” (Colorado Politics)
• The Oklahoma City energy company tussling with Carl Icahn ousts its chief executive officer in what is seen as a win for the activist investor who has complained about the shale producer’s board and management. (Reuters)

TRANSPORTATION: A bill emerging in the Colorado Senate would eliminate a state tax credit for alternative fuel vehicles, including those using electricity, compressed natural gas, hydrogen and hybrids. (Greeley Tribune)

EFFICIENCY: A Colorado program designed to encourage developers to finance energy efficiency as part of their projects is being used for the first time along the state’s western slope. (Grand Junction Daily Sentinel)

WIND:
• A Finland-based energy developer has made its first investment in Texas wind power, acquiring a project that is scheduled to go online in 2019 for $350 million. (Energy Business Review)
• Oklahoma’s tax commission says the state continues to pay refunds on tax credits for wind power, despite claims to the contrary. (The Oklahoman)

POLITICS: A sweeping package of tax hikes on tobacco, natural gas, wind, and motor fuel clears a legislative hurdle in Oklahoma. (Associated Press)

SOLAR: A Las Vegas school district contemplating a move to solar energy needs more time to decide whether it wants to drop its current power provider. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

PIPELINES: A federal judge in Baton Rouge determines that a pipeline connecting a crude hub in Texas to refineries would cause ‘irreparable harm’ to the environment, but stops short of granting environmentalists’ request to halt construction. (The Advocate)

COMMENTARY:
• New Mexico is moving quickly to shift from coal dependency to renewable energy with a series of regulatory moves and pending legislation. (Union of Concerned Scientists)
• More executives with fossil fuel companies are recognizing the impact of climate change and are embracing new policies to fight it. (Houston Chronicle)

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