U.S. Energy News

Federal budget deal could help spur carbon storage technology

CARBON STORAGE: The federal budget deal boosts a tax credit for underground storage of emissions from crude production and fossil fuel power plants from $10 to $35 a metric ton, which could spur development of the technology. (Reuters, Quartz)

• The budget deal also calls for selling 100 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve by 2027, depleting the emergency reserve by 45 percent. (Bloomberg)
• It also reinstates a 9 cents per barrel tax to fund oil spill cleanups. (The Hill)
• West Virginia lawmakers remove a woman from a hearing after she listed oil and gas industry donations to state politicians during her allotted time to testify against a bill. (Huffington Post)

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• Atlantic Coast Pipeline developers file a lawsuit against property owners in Virginia in order to gain land for the project, citing eminent domain. (Daily Progress)
• An Alaska pipeline inspection contractor will lay off more than 260 workers next month due to the termination of a contract with BP. (Alaska’s Energy Desk)

OFFSHORE DRILLING: A bipartisan group of Georgia lawmakers wants the state legislature to formally oppose the Trump administration’s plan to expand offshore drilling as Republican Gov. Nathan Deal is the only governor of 22 coastal states that has not taken a public stance. (Associated Press)

• Vietnam withdraws its application for U.S. financial support to build a coal-fired power plant, ending a deal that would have allowed the country to purchase millions of dollars of turbines and other equipment from U.S.-based General Electric. (New York Times)
• Critics say plans to replace a coal plant in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood with a distribution logistics facility would swap one type of dangerous air pollution for another. (Midwest Energy News)

POLLUTION: The Coast Guard is responding to an estimated 4,200-gallon oil spill in the Mississippi River in Louisiana. (Times-Picayune)

RENEWABLES: The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection recommends the state double its renewable goal to 40 percent by 2030. (Utility Dive)

SOLAR: County commissioners approve a permit for a 75-megawatt solar project that would be the second-largest solar farm in Colorado. (Denver Post)

STORAGE: GE has been chosen to build a 41-megawatt battery project in the U.K., which will be the company’s largest battery plant ever. (Greentech Media)

NUCLEAR: The new federal budget deal extends federal tax credits that will help pay for the Vogtle nuclear project, which Georgia regulators were counting on in December when they voted to continue construction. (Atlanta Business Chronicle)

• The Virginia Senate passes a Dominion Energy-backed reform package that lets the utility keep millions in earnings in exchange for grid upgrades and renewable energy investments. (Richmond Times Dispatch)
• Lawmakers in Wyoming introduce legislation to levy a $2 per megawatt hour tax on renewable energy. (Associated Press)

TRANSPORTATION: In a move to appease automakers, the Trump administration is considering ways to reduce fuel economy targets put in place under President Obama, including a proposal to lower standards from nearly 47 miles per gallon to less than 36 miles per gallon by 2026. (Bloomberg)

COMMENTARY: EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has become the most dangerous member of Trump’s cabinet, says a senior writer at Newsweek.

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