ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Hampton Roads Transit will deploy six electric buses on one of its busiest routes as part of Virginia’s effort to meet climate and equity benchmarks. (Energy News Network)

• Entergy Arkansas still plans to close two coal-fired power plants amid reports that the state of Wyoming funded “dark money” groups in an attempt to halt the closures. (Arkansas Business)
• The retirement of an Asheville coal-fired power plant and a pandemic-related decline in motor-vehicle traffic has accelerated air quality and visibility improvements in western North Carolina. (Smoky Mountain News)

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• Texas’ oil and gas industry contracted in September, continuing a slide that began in early 2019 and escalated with the pandemic. (Natural Gas Intelligence)
• A Louisiana exploration and drilling company continues to develop a pair of deepwater oil wells in the Gulf of Mexico despite a depressed oil market. (The Advocate)

ELECTIONS: The race for one of five seats on Louisiana’s utility regulation board will go to a runoff election after a two-term Republican incumbent failed to win 50% of votes. (The Advocate) 

WIND: Virginia regulators grant a long-delayed, key permit for a western Virginia wind farm that could be completed by the end of 2021. (Roanoke Times)

• Alabama regulators schedule a public hearing on Alabama Power’s plans to cap and close a coal ash pond at a steam plant. (Gadsden Times)
• Duke Energy says it has recycled 77% of the coal ash at its Belews Creek Power Station and is making progress toward closing the basin at the North Carolina plant. (Stokes News)

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• The president of a Memphis municipal utility says the city council needs to “reframe” its debate over whether to remain with Tennessee Valley Authority so that it’s less of a binary decision. (Daily Memphian)
• Florida regulators approve a rate increase for Florida Power & Light and Gulf Power to recover costs for natural gas and other power-plant fuel. (WJXT/WCWJ)

HYDROELECTRIC: The Tennessee Valley Authority assesses the water near an eastern Tennessee dam that is the subject of ongoing repairs. (Johnson City Press) 

• The release of a Memphis-focused Tennessee Valley Authority coloring book two years after the closure of a power plant over concerns over coal ash is “beyond odd,” writes the author of the Smart City Memphis blog. (Memphis Flyer)
• Mountain Valley Pipeline’s announcement that it may increase the volume of natural gas through the planned project, paired with a rollback of federal regulations, worries a retired environmental regulator in western Virginia. (Roanoke Times)

Mason has worked as a journalist since 2001, covering Appalachian communities and the issues that affect them. He compiles the Southeast Energy News digest. Mason previously worked as a wildlife biologist before moving into journalism by freelancing at Coast Weekly in Monterey, California, before taking an internship in 2001 at High Country News. He wrote for the Enterprise Mountaineer in western North Carolina and the Roanoke Times in western Virginia before going freelance in 2012. His work has appeared in Southerly, Daily Yonder, Mother Jones, Huffington Post, WVPB’s Inside Appalachia and elsewhere. Mason was born and raised in Clifton Forge, Virginia, and now lives with his family and a small herd of goats in Floyd County, Virginia.