Southeast Energy News

Arkansas utility delays closure of two coal plants amid lawsuit

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)

COAL:
• 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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OIL & GAS:
• 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)

COAL ASH:
• 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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UTILITIES:
• 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) 

COMMENTARY:
• 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)

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