UTILITIES: Pacific Gas & Electric begins shutting off power to as many as 51,000 homes to reduce the risk of sparking another fire as the Dixie Fire — possibly ignited by the utility’s equipment — grows beyond 600,000 acres and threatens a city of 15,000 people. (Los Angeles Times, New York Times)

ALSO: New Mexico community advocates agree to drop opposition to El Paso Electric’s construction of a new natural gas unit at an existing power plant in exchange for pollution-cutting concessions from the utility. (news release)  

SOLAR:
A San Diego environmental and consumer advocacy group opposes a controversial 600-acre solar plant proposed for a southern California town, saying the facility is too big and power would not go to the nearby community. (San Diego Union-Tribune)
Utility-scale solar facilities can damage local environments, including fragile deserts, but researchers are looking for ways that installations can better protect and even improve ecosystems. (Vox) 

STORAGE: A 185 MW/565 MWh battery facility under construction in Hawaii will replace a retiring coal plant’s generation and act as the “ultimate pacemaker for the grid.” (Canary Media)

WIND: A South Korean company takes over operations at the world’s largest wind tower factory and pledges to create more jobs at the Colorado plant. (Pueblo Chieftain)

EQUITY: Indigenous communities in Hawaii and New Mexico strive for energy sovereignty by decentralizing resources, increasing solar-plus-storage and centering community and the land in decision-making. (Yes Magazine)

CLIMATE:
The Caldor Fire in northern California blows up to 30,000 acres, levelling parts of a town and threatening others. (San Francisco Chronicle)
The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California issues a conservation alert to its 19 million customers for the first time in seven years. (San Diego Union-Tribune)
U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon pledges to require Medicaid plans to cover the costs of air conditioner units while visiting a public housing project in Portland where several residents died during June’s Northwest heat wave. (Oregonian)

COAL: Powder River Basin second-quarter coal production jumps 26% compared to last year due to heat-induced demand and high natural gas prices. (S&P Global)

OIL & GAS: A former Salt Lake City mayor and environmental groups accuse the State of Utah of improperly spending $109 million on fossil fuel projects, including a proposed oil-hauling railway. (Deseret News)

HYDROPOWER: The U.S. Navy plans to invest $6 million in wave energy research at a University of Hawaii grid-connected wave-power test facility. (Hawaii Public Radio)

COMMENTARY:
A California editorial board says the state must fund extreme-heat mitigation efforts such as planting trees, creating parks and replacing pavement with green space in the most vulnerable communities. (Los Angeles Times)
A California dairy farmer urges state lawmakers to invest in dairy and landfill methane mitigation projects as a cost-effective way to battle climate change. (CalMatters)