Western Energy News

Arizona coal plant would cut operations under new owners

COAL: Officials with a Chicago company considering taking over operations at an Arizona coal plant say they would run the facility at less than half its existing capacity. (Associated Press)

REGULATION: Some Arizona regulators signal their desire to open the energy retail and generation markets. (Arizona Capitol Times)

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NUCLEAR: A U.S. Department of Energy official says a small modular nuclear reactor under development in Idaho would be “game changing” for Utah and other potential customers. (Deseret News)

STORAGE: A Southern California utility’s landmark energy storage projects could be derailed by ratepayer and consumer groups questioning whether they are needed. (Utility Dive)

OIL & GAS:
• A judge rules that Idaho regulators violated the U.S. Constitution by forcing several landowners to sell their oil and gas rights to a Texas company without giving them a meaningful appeals process. (Associated Press)
• The Trump administration considers allowing drilling near a lake on Alaska’s Arctic coast considered critical habitat for caribou, polar bears and migratory birds. (Anchorage Daily News)
• A Colorado industry group is identified as one of the sponsors of a website offering critiques of journalists covering oil and gas issues. (KUSA)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: A Chinese company building electric buses in California is banking on transit managers dumping diesel. (Ars Technica)

RESEARCH: U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry says he does not foresee budget cuts to the National Renewable Energy Research Lab in Colorado despite President Trump’s previous calls to slash funding. (Colorado Springs Gazette)

UTILITIES:
• California’s energy future will be determined by regulators deciding how utilities should be compensated for customers who opt to participate in community choice programs. (Utility Dive)
• A southern Colorado city hires a consultant to determine whether it makes sense of form its own municipal utility. (KRDO)
• A Nevada utility sells surplus renewable energy credits to a data company that dropped its service in an acrimonious split. (Nevada Independent)

EFFICIENCY: A recent California law has hampered an energy and water retrofit program, according to a new report from a clean energy financier. (Greentech Media)

SOLAR: A New Mexico electric co-op now has enough solar capacity to supply 25 percent of its daytime load. (Mountain Town News)

TRANSMISSION: Arizona regulators approve a new high-voltage transmission line to serve the Tucson area. (Arizona Daily Star)

RENEWABLES: Amid record wildfires fueled in part by a warming climate, California lawmakers consider a proposal to get all of the state’s electricity from renewable sources by 2045. (New York Times)

POLITICS: Republican candidates running for a seat on the Arizona commission that regulates utilities say they have the kind of personal integrity needed to restore faith in the scandal-plagued agency. (Arizona Republic)

COMMENTARY:
• A California congresswoman says the recent outbreak of wildfires is a terrifying reminder of why the state must be allowed to set its own vehicle emission limits to battle climate change. (The Hill)
• Members of three conservation groups say two Montana watersheds are no place for oil and gas development. (Missoulian)

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