• After a federal review of its safety plans, Duke Energy is another step closer to winning approval of a new power plant in South Carolina. (WFAE Public Radio)
• The TVA shut down its Watts Bar 2 reactor in a planned test keeping it on track to begin full power, commercial operations by next month. (Chattanooga times Free Press)

CLIMATE: A growing legal dispute pits a Virginia professor against a conservative think tank over academics’ calls for a criminal investigation of oil companies’ climate research modeled after the tobacco probes of the 1990s. (ARA Technica)

***SPONSORED LINK: Join climate advocates today from 12-1 p.m. ET on a webinar to learn about Climate Central’s research on “Global Warming and Sizzling Summers in the Southeast.” RSVP here.***

COAL: The National Academy of Sciences will examine a “growing amount of academic research” that suggestions “possible correlations” between mountaintop removal for coal mining and public health risks. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

• A Texas oil company begins seismic tests off northern Florida’s Atlantic coastline. (WFSU Public Media)
• A South Carolina state senator leads a group of 70 other state lawmakers from both major parties urging the U.S Dept. of Interior to reject applications for seismic testing. (Moultrie News)

CLEAN POWER PLAN: A new study by Georgia Tech outlines commercial buildings could achieve 6.7 percent average annual energy savings through their states’ compliance with the Clean Power Plan. (Facility Executive)

FRACKING: Regulatory loopholes and questionable business practices are cited for enabling fracking waste from West Virginia to be dumped at landfills in Kentucky. (Public News Service)

COAL ASH: Duke Energy squares off against a public interest law firm over a burgeoning water safety controversy in North Carolina as details emerge from a key deposition of a state toxicologist. (Raleigh News & Observer)

SOLAR: Interconnection issues are among the causes cited for a delay in completing a large solar system on a VA hospital in Arkansas. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)

UTILITIES: Duke Energy says up to 50,000 gallons of storm water runoff spilled from a coal-fired power plant in North Carolina into a nearby river. (Fayetteville Observer)

SMART GRID: Duke Energy proposes charging $150 to North Carolina customers who don’t want smart meters installed at their homes. (Raleigh News & Observer)

OVERSIGHT: An Alabama commission deadlocks on whether a utility commissioner can lease land to a solar company that plans to sell electricity to Alabama Power. (Alabama Media Group)

PIPELINES: The Williams Companies said it expects federal approval shortly of a 115-mile pipeline for transporting natural gas from near Atlanta to utilities in northwest Georgia. (Atlanta Business Chronicle)

NATURAL GAS: Eastman Chemical in Tennessee admits it needs to work faster to meet its pledge to replace coal-fired boilers with those fueled by natural gas. (Kingsport Times News)

COMMENTARY: Without preemptive responses, rising sea levels could prove catastrophic for the Hampton Roads region along Virginia’s coast. (The Virginian-Pilot)

Jim Pierobon, a policy, marketing and social media strategist, was a founding contributor to Southeast Energy News. He passed away after a long battle with pancreatic cancer in 2018.

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