Western Energy News

California could become vanguard on floating offshore wind

WIND: Experts say California’s electrification push could make it the groundbreaking market for floating offshore wind farms in the U.S. (Utility Dive)

HYDROPOWER: A Utah agency drops planned hydropower stations from a water pipeline project, despite spending millions seeking federal approval. (Salt Lake Tribune)

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SOLAR: A central California utility has completed a 30 MW community solar project aimed at low-income customers. (KYMA)

UTILITIES
A group of PG&E noteholders indicated in court filings they are ready to invest $29.2 billion as part of a reorganization plan that will pay off the bankrupt California utility’s wildfire liabilities. (Reuters)
Energy and climate experts say PG&E’s planned power shut-offs are likely to get worse with adverse weather conditions in Northern California, most notably a lack of sustained and significant rainfall. (San Francisco Chronicle)

OVERSIGHT:
The Interior Department is planning to distribute key staff to different locations around the West, a move insiders say will complicate permitting for energy projects. (Politico)
A Senate subcommittee zeroed out funding for the planned Bureau of Land Management move to Colorado in its fiscal 2020 spending proposal. (Colorado Independent)
California and 16 other states are suing the Trump administration over rollback of the Endangered Species Act, a move the Interior Secretary, a former oil lobbyist, says is a “necessary modernization” of the law. (Los Angeles Times)

COAL:
Inspection reports reveal that Blackjewel’s Wyoming facilities are still mining some coal; the company’s bankruptcy resulted in a “reduced operational status” of the mines, not a full cessation. (Casper Star-Tribune)
Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy mentions Wyoming coal as a possible export to justify a future 1,500-mile “Alaska to Alberta Railway” railroad extension. (Anchorage Press)

OIL & GAS:
A federal court last week ordered the Interior Department to halt drilling and sales of new oil leases in the Colorado River Valley as the climate impacts were not included in its most recent resource management plan completed in 2015. (Aspen Journalism)
A new investigative report explores the growth of fracking wells in New Mexico’s Great Chaco area in recent years and the Navajo Nation’s efforts in raising awareness. (New Mexico Political Report)
• A Colorado lawmaker says new oil and gas requirements mandated by Senate Bill 181 represent “a real paradigm shift” for the industry. (Denver Post)
Work has begun on a new system of pipelines to collect oil from operations in New Mexico’s Northern Delaware Basin. (Carlsbad Current-Argus)

EFFICIENCY: Nevada’s Southwest Gas launched energy efficiency rebate programs for businesses and homeowners. (Nevada Appeal)

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ACTIVISM: Indigenous protesters critical of proposed natural gas projects Washington Gov. Jay Inslee previously supported faced riot police as they called on Inslee to take stronger action against climate change. (Seattle Times)

COMMENTARY:
A California Public Utilities Commissioner explains the state’s attempt to help wildfire-vulnerable communities gain access to batteries. (Greentech Media)
Citing the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster, a nonprofit regulatory compliance organization in Alaska says Congress must act to protect a changing Arctic. (Anchorage Dispatch News)

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