Southeast Energy News

Coal magnate Bob Murray applies for federal black lung benefits

COAL: Bob Murray, who for years fought black lung regulations as the former president and CEO of the now-bankrupt Murray Energy, has filed an application to receive federal black lung benefits and is “near death,” according to his claim. (West Virginia Public Broadcasting/Ohio Valley Resource)

ALSO:
• Virginia regulators for the first time will study coal dust pollution in two neighborhoods in Norfolk and Newport News after years of complaints from residents about toxic soot coating cars and homes. (Virginian-Pilot)
• Jacksonville, Florida’s port authority says it is interested in acquiring and redeveloping a decommissioned coal-fired power plant site. (Daily Record)

COAL ASH: Georgia Power responds to a lawsuit alleging that coal ash from its Plant Scherer polluted well water, arguing that the statute of limitations has passed and that the case should be dismissed. (WGXA)

PIPELINES:
• As the Mountain Valley Pipeline prepares to bring thousands of out-of-state workers to Southwest Virginia, the developer refuses to share its COVID-19 response plan with state regulators, documents show. (Blue Virginia)
• As permits are slowly reissued, Mountain Valley Pipeline developers are more confident that the project will be in service by early 2021. (Utility Dive)
• Virginia regulators and property owners try to determine “the best path forward” for repairing land and forests torn up to prepare for construction of the now-canceled Atlantic Coast Pipeline. (Nelson County Times)

SOLAR:
• Duke Energy will build its first floating solar array at a U.S. Army base in North Carolina — and the largest ever announced in the Southeast. (Greentech Media)
• Texas is emerging as a solar power capital, with San Antonio’s CPS Energy helping to lead the expansion of solar capacity in the state. (Express-News)
• A Tennessee utility approves a new agreement with Tennessee Valley Authority that gives it more flexibility to pursue solar power on its own. (News-Herald)
• A North Carolina county board will hold a public hearing Monday to consider a proposed moratorium on solar farm development. (Coastal Review Online)
• An Arkansas city cuts the ribbon on its second solar project and celebrates its status as the state’s first 100% solar-powered city. (Arkansas Business)

WIND:
• Virginia receives a $750,000 military grant to develop a mapping tool to help the state better coordinate with the military on wind energy siting. (CBS19)
• Dominion Energy’s two-turbine Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind pilot project with Ørsted has officially started generating power. (Offshore Engineer)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Advocates celebrate National Drive Electric Week in Dallas, Louisville, El Paso and elsewhere with virtual and in-person events. (Dallas Innovates, WTVQ, KFOX14)

UTILITIES:
• Georgia Power’s moratorium on disconnections ends as the pandemic rolls on, putting 132,000 customers at risk of shutoffs. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
• Dominion Energy proposes a rate increase for natural gas customers in West Virginia to pay for the cost of pipeline replacement and expansion. (WBOY)

OIL & GAS: A Texas community worries about its drinking water following a crude oil spill above an aquifer. (KOSA)

TECHNOLOGY: The U.S. Department of Energy’s undersecretary for science toured Georgia Tech’s energy-related laboratories last week. (news release)

COMMENTARY: It’s not really charity if you get something out of it, a columnist writes to Florida Power & Light’s officials who reportedly discussed donating to charities associated with Jacksonville City Council members as the company sought to buy the city’s municipal utility. (Florida Times-Union)

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