FOSSIL FUELS: While fossil fuel companies took in at least $8.2 billion in government loans and tax exemptions from last year’s COVID-19 relief packages, a report shows the industry still cut nearly 60,000 jobs. (Inside Climate News)

ALSO:
The oil sands industry will likely benefit from the White House’s infrastructure plan, which will need a massive amount of asphalt to repair roads and bridges. (Bloomberg)
Kansas legislation allowing utilities to refinance debt on coal plants that are retired early will likely be signed into law, but it’s unclear how often it might be used. (Energy News Network)

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STORAGE: California is expected to add more battery capacity than China this year, making the state a global test case this summer for how effectively grid-scale storage can maintain reliability in extreme conditions. (Bloomberg)

ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE:
An NAACP report argues the fossil fuel industry uses “deceptive tactics” to avoid responsibility as communities of color continue to disproportionately face effects of climate change. (news release)
A group of progressive House members tell the Federal Reserve to “explore all possible authorities it can use” to “support bank investment aimed at limiting global temperature rise” and direct lending to low-income and minority communities. (The Hill)
A national story on the planned 49-mile Byhalia Connection pipeline in Memphis brings renewed intensity to the fight over the project’s path through Black neighborhoods that has been criticized as environmental racism. (CBS News, WREG)
A college student’s urban farming project has so far delivered thousands of pounds of fresh produce to residents of food deserts around Washington, D.C. while mitigating impacts of climate change. (Energy News Network)

NUCLEAR:
Nuclear will likely be included as a power source under the Biden administration’s proposed clean energy standard, White House climate adviser Gina McCarthy says, as will carbon capture. (Bloomberg)
An agreement signed yesterday could lead to the country’s first commercial advanced modular reactor, an 80 MW facility planned in eastern Washington. (Yakima Herald)

SOLAR: While community solar has taken off in Minnesota, experts say programs have failed to deliver benefits to low-income customers and those disproportionately affected by pollution. (Sahan Journal)

WIND: Larger wind turbines don’t kill more birds and wildlife than smaller models, a U.S. Geological Survey study finds, indicating it’s worth it to upgrade small turbines that produce less energy. (E&E News, subscription; news release)

TEXAS: The death toll from February’s storm and outages has reached at least 194, nearly twice the official count and four times more than initial reports. (Houston Chronicle)

PIPELINES:
• A group of 33 Democratic lawmakers call on President Biden to shut down the Dakota Access pipeline as the administration faces an upcoming deadline to decide the project’s future. (The Hill)
New Jersey and a conservation group argue before the U.S. Supreme Court that it’s unconstitutional for the developers of the PennEast pipeline to seize state-owned land for its project. (Law360, subscription; E&E News, subscription)

CLIMATE: In what could be a warning sign for similar litigation, a federal appeals court rejects New York City’s climate lawsuit against major oil companies, saying it is an issue for the federal government, not the courts. (Bloomberg)

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EMISSIONS: Four House Democrats reintroduce carbon pricing legislation, proposing charges start at $15 per metric ton and increase by $10 each year. (The Hill)

COMMENTARY: Exposure to fossil fuel emissions made COVID-19 even more deadly in communities of color — and getting “back to normal” isn’t going to fix that legacy of environmental racism, an environmental justice advocate writes. (Newsweek)