Western Energy News

As wildfires set record, California seeks path forward on climate

CALIFORNIA: State officials digress on how best to address climate change as wildfires this year have burned a record 4 million acres — an area the size of Connecticut. (San Francisco Chronicle, Associated Press)

ALSO:
California regulators are considering further increases to PG&E’s monthly bills to pay for wildfire mitigation and catastrophic events. (Mercury News)
A meeting of PG&E stakeholders concludes that microgrids and distributed energy resources can help reduce the utility’s diesel use during wildfire emergencies. (Microgrid Knowledge)
A Northern California town destroyed by 2018’s Camp Fire is facing challenges in getting all power lines underground, as other utilities say PG&E‘s plan is too expensive for them. (Paradise Post)
• Residents of a California town push back against PG&E’s efforts to trim and remove trees to prevent wildfires. (Sacramento Bee)

UTILITIES: Arizona’s largest power utility implements a $51.9 million energy efficiency package to help families and businesses save money amid the pandemic. (Daily Energy Insider)

EMISSIONS: A Colorado advocate says the state’s recently released climate plan doesn’t push utilities hard enough on cutting emissions. (Utility Dive)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
Experts say California’s ambitious plan to sell only zero-emissions vehicles by 2035 is feasible despite challenges. (CNN)
Electric truck maker Nikola says it is still on track to complete its Arizona manufacturing facility by 2023 despite its CEO’s departure. (Utility Dive)

OIL & GAS:
Wyoming regulators reset the state’s oil and gas conservation tax after its six-month tax holiday due to the coronavirus pandemic ended last week. (Casper Star Tribune)
Alaska’s major oil companies face a challenge from a citizen ballot initiative led by an oil and gas attorney that would boost production taxes. (Anchorage Daily News)

POLLUTION: Unprecedented smoke from Western wildfires is harming Washington’s environment and economy. (Crosscut)

POLITICS: New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is among politicians being targeted by a fossil fuel advocacy group with ties to President Trump’s reelection campaign. (Santa Fe New Mexican)

SOLAR: A Western Colorado co-op says its solar group buy program will result in more than 350 KW of solar energy being deployed to customers’ rooftops. (Grand Junction Daily Sentinel)

COMMENTARY:
Three energy advocates say it is past time for California’s grid to utilize predictive analytical tools to prevent power outages. (Energy News Network)
U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menzes says New Mexico has become a land of opportunity because of increased oil and natural gas production. (Albuquerque Journal)
A former California official says this year’s fires and power outages are a “wake-up call” that the state needs to speed up its renewable energy expansion plans. (Cal Matters)

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