Western Energy News

California bill would ban fracking by 2027

OIL & GAS: California lawmakers introduce a bill that would ban fracking and other methods of oil extraction in the state by 2027 and require wells to be set back from homes and other public places. (San Francisco Chronicle)

ALSO: A group of herring fishermen file a class action lawsuit against Chevron over a San Francisco Bay oil spill. (Courthouse News)

PUBLIC LANDS:
The Biden administration is appealing a federal judge’s ruling requiring further analysis of oil and gas lease sales in Utah’s Uinta Basin. (E&E News, subscription)
House Democrats’ public lands package includes conservation bills aiming to protect Colorado and California wilderness as well as  legislation that would permanently protect the Grand Canyon area from uranium mining. (E&E News, KNAU)
The Interior Department is expected to postpone today the Trump administration’s decision to allow mining on 10 million acres of Alaska tracts. (E&E News, subscription)
A Nevada rancher is suing the Bureau of Land Management over the agency’s approval of a lithium mine, alleging the decision relied “entirely upon flawed and error-laden findings.” (Associated Press)

GRID:
Nearly 150,000 Oregon ratepayers remain without electricity from the extreme snow and ice storm that triggered the state’s largest blackout in decades, with utilities saying most power will be restored by Friday. (Oregon Public Broadcasting, Willamette Week)
A media investigation finds PG&E knew about the extreme wear and tear of old transmission line parts months before 2018’s deadly and destructive Camp Fire. (ABC10) 

HYDROPOWER: The Interior Department issues its first-ever lease for a full-scale, utility grid-connected ocean wave energy project off the Oregon coast. (Offshore Engineer Magazine)

CLIMATE: California is set to review its cap and trade program as part of its plan to tackle climate change, but environmental groups say the program doesn’t protect communities adversely impacted by fossil fuels pollution. (CalMatters)

SOLAR:
• Proposed New Mexico bills that would enable community solar initiatives could pass this year thanks to significant grassroots support. (Albuquerque Journal)
• A Wyoming county denies a permit application for a commercial solar energy facility in a unanimous vote, citing a number of concerns including information that contradicted what county officials had been told previously. (Sheridan Press)

WIND: A Danish manufacturer of wind turbine blades and towers lays off 450 workers at its three Colorado plants, including 120 at its Pueblo facility. (Denver Business Journal, Pueblo Chieftain)

BIOFUEL: A Montana refinery is retooling to produce biodiesel, with an eye toward Canadian markets. (S&P Global) 

PIPELINES: Rural Montana communities face budget uncertainty with the prospect of losing millions of dollars in revenue from the Keystone XL pipeline. (KULR)

COMMENTARY: The CEO of a privately-owned oilfield services company says President Biden’s moratorium on oil and gas leases could adversely impact Western shale production beyond federal lands for years. (Forbes)

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