U.S. Energy News

California lawmakers drop plan to slash gasoline consumption

CALIFORNIA: Amid pressure from the state’s oil industry, California lawmakers drop a plan to cut the state’s gasoline consumption 50 percent by 2030. (Los Angeles Times)

NUCLEAR:
• Exelon will continue to pursue legislation guaranteeing revenue for its Illinois nuclear plants, despite results from a recent capacity auction that will ensure their operation through mid-2019. (Midwest Energy News)
• A Department of Energy team has begun crafting strategies for reaching out to communities that might accept and store nuclear waste. (Greenwire)

POLICY: Opponents of a 2007 North Carolina law that mandates 6% of electricity sold must come from renewable sources are making a last-minute push to freeze it at that level. (Associated Press)

CLEAN POWER PLAN: A federal appeals court declined requests late Wednesday by West Virginia and other states to block the Obama administration’s landmark climate rule for power plants. (The Hill)

COAL: The U.S. Energy Information Administration lowers its coal production forecast to the lowest point since the 1980s. (Bloomberg)

SOLAR:
• U.S. solar capacity hits a landmark 20 gigawatts, but an expiring tax credit could slow future growth. (Vox)
• Industry groups continue to pressure Nevada regulators to reject increased fees for solar customers. (Las Vegas Sun)

WIND: Opponents of a Washington state wind farm are challenging the Bonneville Power Administration’s authority to connect it to the grid. (Associated Press)

FRACKING: Showdowns between the shale industry and frustrated landowners in West Virginia are becoming more hostile. (EnergyWire)

PIPELINES:
• An analysis of federal data finds new pipelines installed in response to the shale boom are failing at a rate on par with lines installed before the 1940s. (SNL Energy)
Environmentalists and ranchers are teaming up to fight a proposed pipeline in West Texas. (InsideClimate News)
• Citing legal constraints, county officials in Wisconsin are backing off a plan to require Enbridge to set up a cleanup fund in case a spill occurs. (Wisconsin State Journal)
• FERC denies a New York county’s request to view records regarding culturally sensitive sites along a planned pipeline route. (Oneanta Daily Star)

GRID: Microgrid projects in Brooklyn, New York and in a Long Island tourist town aim to improve reliability. (Bloomberg, Huffington Post)

UTILITIES:
• An environmental group accuses a Utah utility of greenwashing while pushing back against renewable energy. (Ogden Standard Examiner)
• Energy firms in Nebraska push for changes to allow for competition between alternative energy suppliers and public utilities. (Associated Press)

DIVESTMENT: The University of California sells off $200 million in coal and oil sands holdings. (Los Angeles Times)

COMMENTARY:
Utilities aren’t opposing distributed energy because they’re greedy, it’s because their business model was designed for the 20th Century. (Vox)
The Arizona Republic says the extent to which regulators are beholden to the state’s largest utility is “embarrassing” and “insulting.”

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