U.S. Energy News

Emails show Justice Dept. helping oil industry fight climate lawsuits 

OIL & GAS: Internal emails reveal that Department of Justice attorneys have been working closely with the oil industry to oppose climate lawsuits filed by the cities of Oakland and San Francisco. (InsideClimate News)

COAL:
A southern Illinois coal company’s fight to dump mine water into a nearby river is a sign of things to come as the industry looks to cut costs amid worsening market conditions, analysts say. (Energy News Network)
• U.S. coal-fired power plants continue to shut down at a near-record pace despite President Trump’s efforts to prop up the industry. (Reuters)

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COAL ASH: Duke Energy and its opponents end a years-long legal fight over coal ash, with the utility agreeing to dig up nearly 80 million tons of ash and move it to lined storage. (Energy News Network)

EFFICIENCY:
• The Department of Energy is publishing the first new national energy efficiency standards since 2017 after a federal court prodded it to take action. (E&E News, subscription)
A pilot program of four homes in rural Colorado with distributed energy resources working together across the buildings shows what energy resilience could look like in the future. (Greentech Media)

TRANSPORTATION:
• Hydrogen fuel cells could be cheaper than batteries and diesel engines for commercial vehicles by 2027, according to a new analysis. (E&E News)
• Massachusetts revives its electric vehicle incentives but advocates say more still needs to be done to reach state climate goals. (Energy News Network)

PIPELINES:
• A federal appeals court asks the Maine Supreme Court to clarify whether state law allows a city to ban a pipeline project. (E&E News, subscription required)
As Kinder Morgan prepares to build the Permian Highway Pipeline through Texas Hill Country, communities and landowners plan actions to oppose it. (Environmental Health News)

GRID:
Some states’ regulators are turning down smart meters as they say utilities are not using their capabilities enough to justify the costs. (Greentech Media)
Wholesale electricity prices last year fell nationwide except in Texas, where prices soared largely due to record demand during heat waves. (Houston Chronicle)

POLITICS: New Democratic governors in Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan have laid the groundwork for clean energy action, though bold policies weren’t enacted in 2019. (E&E News, subscription)

BIOFUELS: The U.S. Government Accountability Office says it will review the Trump administration’s use of biofuel waivers for oil refineries. (Reuters)

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CLIMATE:
A CDC climate expert who claimed to have been a victim of the Trump administration’s war on science was actually pushed out for his behavior in the workplace, particularly toward women, an investigation finds. (BuzzFeed News)
New York will not appeal its climate lawsuit against Exxon after losing in federal court. (Bloomberg)

ACTIVISM: The U.S. Department of Homeland Security in an internal document lists a climate activist group as a domestic “extremist” organization alongside violent white nationalists and mass killers. (The Guardian)

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