Western Energy News

Documents: BLM bent rules to give breaks to oil companies

PUBLIC LANDS: Emails show the Bureau of Land Management may have violated its own rules in extending royalty breaks to oil companies and continuing lease sales during the economic downturn. (High Country News)

ALSO: The Interior Department is extending the public comment period on the that will guide oil and gas development over the next decade in northwestern New Mexico areas revered by Native American tribes. (Associated Press)

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RENEWABLE ENERGY: Amazon announces a new round of solar projects and suggests it may be able to reach 100% renewable energy by 2025, five years earlier than previously stated. (Greentech Media)

CALIFORNIA:
An email sent by a PG&E wildfire victim during a mandated quiet period delays a key vote by California regulators on the utility’s bankruptcy plan. (Associated Press)
PG&E aims to make its power shutoffs shorter in duration this coming wildfire season, and wants California regulators to approve a plan for up to 450 MW of mobile generators to back up communities during outages. (Sonoma West, Greentech Media)

EFFICIENCY: A Los Angeles County efficiency program ends after years of criticism that the county enabled predatory lending and put people at risk of losing their homes. (Los Angeles Times)

COAL: Navajo Transitional Energy Company announces a new round of furloughs and layoffs at its Wyoming coal mine because of the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic. (Casper Star-Tribune)

OIL & GAS:
FERC approves a liquified natural gas export project in Alaska. (KTVA)
The head of the Colorado Petroleum Council says oil and gas companies want state regulators to give them time to get back on their feet. (Denver Business Journal)
The University of Texas announces a new project that will monitor methane emissions in the Permian Basin. (E&E News, subscription)

PIPELINES:
A 1.2-mile section of the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline in Montana is now complete except for some site reclamation activity. (Associated Press)
Work has begun on a new $60 million, 35-mile gas pipeline that will give northern New Mexico more natural gas capacity and reliability. (Albuquerque Journal)

NUCLEAR:
A recent report indicates radioactive and chemical contamination in an aquifer below the Idaho National Laboratory has decreased or remained constant in recent years thanks to nuclear waste cleanup. (Associated Press)
Utah regulators are considering a nuclear energy producer’s proposal to accept its first radioactive waste shipment from overseas. (Salt Lake Tribune)

WIND: Xcel Energy announces the first few turbines have been erected at its Sagamore Wind Project in eastern New Mexico. (Associated Press)

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MICROGRIDS: A California school district is seeking bids for at least six microgrids as part of a solar and resiliency project. (Microgrid Knowledge)

COMMENTARY:
Two New Mexico renewable energy experts say that energy infrastructure development is integral to the state’s economic recovery. (Santa Fe New Mexican)
A Northwest hydropower advocate says Gov. Kate Brown’s energy policy is at odds with her social and environmental platform. (The Register-Guard)

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