U.S. Energy News

As climate concerns deepen, oil companies go on trial

CLIMATE: A Massachusetts city considers requiring climate warnings on gasoline pumps but the move would likely face lawsuits. (Energy News Network)

ALSO:
• Attorneys for Exxon Mobil and the state of New York make opening statements in only the second climate change lawsuit to reach trial. (New York Times)
• As the Exxon trial began, the company purchased Google ads for several terms associated with the climate trial. (Mashable)
The U.S. Supreme Court rejects an emergency stay requested by oil producers and allows Baltimore’s climate lawsuit to proceed in state court. (The Hill)

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EFFICIENCY:
Minneapolis’ gas utility says it is open to a more inclusive on-bill financing program that would let customers pay for efficiency upgrades without credit checks or personal loans. (Energy News Network)
A Missouri ratepayer advocate says tree planting and reflective roofs to reduce Kansas City’s urban heat island would produce broader benefits than a utility’s proposed energy efficiency plan. (Energy News Network)

RENEWABLES:
• A state task force concludes that replacing coal with renewables would save Indiana customers $12 billion over 30 years compared to natural gas. (WBOI)
• NextEra Energy is growing its renewable energy and storage portfolio but still investing in natural gas projects in Alabama and Appalachia. (Greentech Media)

OIL & GAS:
• Persuading people to stop using natural gas is shaping up to be the next act in California’s war on climate change. (Los Angeles Times)
• Despite federal investigations, the Bureau of Land Management still does not have a way to track thousands of “orphan wells” on federal lands across the West that need plugging. (E&E News, subscription)
• President Trump will speak at a shale gas convention today in Pittsburgh to tout his energy and jobs policies in the center of the fracking boom. (TribLive)

PIPELINES:
Mountain Valley Pipeline developers delay the completion date to 2020 and raise the cost by half a billion dollars amid legal challenges. (Roanoke Times)
A gas company CEO says an undersea pipeline into New York City could help the state’s climate goals and solve a stalemate with utilities unwilling to connect new natural gas customers. (Bloomberg)

WIND:
• The head of the federal agency that oversees offshore wind development says the Trump administration is committed to the resource amid uncertainty caused by the delay of the first large-scale U.S. project. (E&E News, subscription)
A study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory explores the prospects for offshore wind in Oregon. (Greentech Media)
A public comment period opens for a plan to preserve the American burying beetle at the site of a proposed Oklahoma wind farm. (Journal Record)
Taller wind turbines with shorter blades could significantly reduce bird deaths, according to a University of Illinois researcher’s study. (Yale Environment 360)

SOLAR: A group of 231 mayors from across the country write to Congress asking it to extend the solar Investment Tax Credit another five years. (Utility Dive)

TRANSPORTATION: A survey finds despite concerns about climate change, only a small percentage of Portland, Oregon, voters want the government to stop spending money on expanding roads. (Willamette Week) 

CALIFORNIA:
PG&E will decide later today whether to move ahead with precautionary power shut-offs lasting two days to roughly a half-million customers in Northern California due to wildfire risk. (Associated Press)
Investments in new grid technology to limit the scope and duration of fire-prevention outages were among the few successes PG&E reported to state regulators last week during a five-hour grilling. (Greentech Media)

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OHIO:
A federal judge is expected to rule today on whether to give supporters of a referendum on coal and nuclear bailouts 38 more days to collect petition signatures. (Toledo Blade)
• The lead organizer says the referendum was delayed by state officials’ approval and an intimidation campaign by opponents. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)

COMMENTARY:
• Carbon mitigation and sequestration may be airlines’ best hope of addressing emissions, two cleantech experts write. (Greentech Media)
David Roberts says grid hardening, land-use reform, and restructuring PG&E are solutions to California’s wildfire safety blackout problems. (Vox)
A National Hydropower Association official says deep decarbonization of the nation’s electricity system cannot happen without hydropower. (The Hill)

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