Note to readers: Western Energy News is taking a break for the holiday and will be back on Monday, Nov. 29. Thank you for reading!

OIL & GAS: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency declares a major oil- and gas-producing county in Colorado out of compliance with federal ground-level ozone standards, which could lead to more stringent regulations for producers. (E&E News)

ALSO:
The Biden administration extends public comment periods for upcoming oil and gas lease sales in Wyoming, New Mexico, and other Western states. (E&E News, subscription)
California regulators have denied 109 hydraulic fracturing permits since July because of potential climate impacts, drawing praise from environmentalists and lawsuits from industry. (San Francisco Chronicle)

HYDROGEN: Environmental groups pan New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s bid to create four hydrogen hubs because they would produce the fuel from natural gas. (Capital & Main) 

COAL: Residents of a Montana town sue the owners of the Colstrip power plant over coal dust that has blown off of waste piles, claiming it has harmed property and human health. (Daily Montanan)

UTILITIES:
California Gov. Gavin Newsom appoints one of his energy policy experts to lead the state’s Public Utilities Commission. (San Francisco Chronicle)
California regulators fine Pacific Gas & Electric $7.5 million for failing to properly inspect and repair transmission lines and poles from 2009 through 2018. (KTXL)
PG&E installs artificial intelligence software on remote cameras to better monitor wildfire-prone areas. (CBS13)

WIND: Conservationists and Indigenous groups intensify calls for the Biden administration to designate a national monument on southern Nevada land targeted by wind power developers. (Las Vegas Sun)

PUBLIC LANDS: Interior Secretary Deb Haaland visits Chaco Culture National Historical Park — calling it a “living landscape” — to launch the public comment period on a proposed oil and gas drilling ban around the park. (NM Political Report)

POLITICS: Wyoming Republican Gov. Mark Gordon urges West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin to cut fossil fuel leasing rules and royalty hikes from Democrats’ reconciliation bill awaiting a Senate vote. (E&E News, subscription)

TRANSPORTATION: A Colorado entrepreneur fills electric vehicle “charging gaps” around the state with fast charging stations. (Colorado Sun)

NUCLEAR:
Federal regulators approve Idaho National Laboratories’ proposal to build an experimental sodium potassium-cooled, thermal microreactor. (news release) 
• Rising uranium prices could incentivize companies to revive mothballed Utah and Wyoming mines. (S&P Global)

COMMENTARY:
A Washington port official and business leader say the state could become a global offshore wind turbine manufacturing hub by collaborating with other West Coast states. (Seattle Times)
An Alaskan writer urges state leaders to continue efforts to diversify the economy even though oil prices and state revenues are rising. (Midnight Sun)