U.S. Energy News

Colorado adopts the country’s “most comprehensive” pipeline rules

PIPELINES:
• Colorado regulators approve the country’s “most comprehensive rules” for oil and gas pipelines, following a deadly home explosion caused by a gas leak last April. (Associated Press)
• A private security firm hired by the Dakota Access pipeline developer wants the scope of a state agency’s lawsuit against it scaled back. (Associated Press)

OIL & GAS:
• A progressive revolt is brewing in West Virginia after House of Delegates candidate Lissa Lucas was escorted from the capitol for reading the names of lawmakers who have taken political contribution from the oil and gas industry. (Rolling Stone)
• Colorado regulators approve a tax hike on the oil and gas industry that’s expected to raise $4.8 million to help plug abandoned wells and tackle other environmental projects. (Denver Post)
• Exxon is suing at least 30 people and organizations that launched climate change lawsuits against the company, saying they are “conspiring” in a coordinated legal and public relations campaign. (Bloomberg, Common Dreams)

COAL: Utah and Wyoming lawmakers introduce bills to fund legal challenges against policies in West Coast states that they think hurt their coal industries. (Reuters)

SOLAR:
• Three Canadian solar manufacturers sue the Trump administration over new tariffs on imported solar panels, and at least five U.S. trading partners have launched complaints at the World Trade Organization. (Greentech Media)
• Trump’s new solar tariff could hit African American solar workers especially hard. (Grist)
• Arizona-based First Solar is the second biggest global solar developer, with a total operational and development portfolio of almost 10 gigawatts, according to a new report. (Greentech Media)
• A 65-megawatt solar-plus-storage plant being built by First Solar in Arizona suggests a new paradigm for solar-rich markets: the solar peak power plant. (Greentech Media)
• Despite the Trump administration’s recent solar import tariff, the future of Florida’s solar industry looks strong. (U.S. News)
• A North Dakota entrepreneur develops a prototype that would make it easier to install solar panels on steep rooftops. (Midwest Energy News)

WIND: MidAmerican Energy completes two new wind projects in Iowa that total 338 megawatts. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)

RENEWABLES: The U.S. government loaned nearly $570 million to overseas solar, wind and other low-carbon ventures in 2017 through an Obama administration policy, according to government documents. (Reuters)

GRID: California regulators adopt a resolution that will force the state’s future community choice aggregators (CCAs) to procure enough energy to meet the grid’s need when energy demand is peaking. (Greentech Media)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: At a public hearing, owners of electric and hybrid vehicles criticize new fees proposed by Gov. Paul LePage as arbitrary and punitive; state officials say the money is needed for roads. (Portland Press Herald)

BIOFUELS: The debate over the Renewable Fuel Standard heats up as oil interests claim ethanol mandates hurt profitability and caused a major refinery to declare bankruptcy. (Bloomberg)

NUCLEAR: Having a Republican in the White House and former South Carolina lawmakers in the administration does not appear to be helping those trying to save the state’s Summer nuclear project. (The State)

ELECTRICITY: South Carolina had the highest average residential electricity expenditures in the country in 2016, with the average customer spending $1,753. (Utility Dive)

REGULATION: FERC Chairman Kevin McIntyre tells state utility regulators he is a “big fan” of Energy Secretary Rick Perry and that his commission had to reject the DOE’s grid resilience rule on “technical legal grounds.” (Utility Dive)

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CLIMATE:
• Delivering small packages with drones instead of trucks would reduce greenhouse gas emissions compared to diesel or electric trucks, according to a new study. (Carbon Brief)
• During a visit to Olympia, former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says states like Washington can take the lead on climate change by passing a carbon tax. (Associated Press)
• U.S. intelligence agencies warn that climate change is “likely to fuel economic and social discontent – and possibly upheaval” this year. (InsideClimate News)

COMMENTARY: The Trump administration could increase state-level support for its offshore drilling plan by making states equal partners and sharing the spoils of energy development, says a director at the American Legislative Exchange Council. (The Hill)

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