U.S. Energy News

Google to help track power plant pollution in real time

POWER PLANTS: An artificial intelligence firm plans to use satellite imagery to track air pollution, including carbon emissions, from every power plant in the world in real time and make the information publicly available. (Vox)

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee signs legislation into law shifting the state to 100 percent clean energy by 2045. (InsideClimate News)
• Amid Trump’s rollback of federal climate policy, states and companies are ramping up clean energy targets, and 1 in 5 Americans now live in places with 100% clean energy targets. (Axios, Grist)
A bipartisan group of Pennsylvania legislators reintroduced a series of bills to get the state to 100% renewable energy by 2050. (StateImpact Pennsylvania)

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The largest electric vehicle public charging network announces that it now gets all of its electricity from renewable sources. (E&E News, subscription)
An Australian company seeks permission to mine for lithium near Death Valley, triggering environmentalists’ fears that Southern California could become the scene of a “white gold rush.” (Los Angeles Times)
Tesla opens a service center in Toledo, Ohio, as the company attempts to sell its vehicles directly to customers in Michigan. (Detroit News)

• A coalition of unlikely allies calls for breaking up Virginia’s monopoly utilities and letting customers choose power providers. (Washington Post)
• The Tennessee Valley Authority defends its participation in a utility trade group that has fought against tighter air pollution standards. (E&E News)
• At Dominion Energy’s annual meeting, protesters say the utility hasn’t done enough to address climate change or help poor people improve energy efficiency. (The State)

COAL ASH: Boat loads of coal ash from power plants in Puerto Rico are being shipped across the ocean to a landfill in Central Florida. (WFTV)

• A federal appeals court upholds a decision that coal mining executive Bob Murray intimidated and interfered with miners’ rights to report unsafe working conditions. (West Virginia Public Broadcasting)
• The federal government sues nearly two dozen coal companies owned by or affiliated with West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice to collect nearly $4 million in unpaid fines for miner-safety violations. (The Roanoke Times)
• Retired coal miners plan to make another plea to Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to support a plan to fix their failing pension plan. (Herald Leader)

• Top shale-drilling states flare near-record amounts of natural gas as production overwhelms the pipeline network. (E&E News, subscription)
• The Trump administration will complete an environmental review of the Keystone XL pipeline even if a federal court throws out a lawsuit that blocked the project. (Associated Press)

• Mayors from along the North Carolina coast gather today to discuss their worries about offshore oil and gas exploration. (Associated Press)
Maine Senators Susan Collins and Angus King are backing a bipartisan bill to ban offshore drilling off the New England coast. (Mainebiz)

An Oregon company wants to build nuclear plants that are smaller, simpler and cheaper. (NPR)
The chairman of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio says natural gas would likely replace two nuclear plants if they are closed. (Toledo Blade)

• The United States enters a new phase of climate politics, with Democrats shaping ideas that could become actual policy after the 2020 election. (Axios)
• Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis prepares to hire a chief resilience officer to coordinate the state’s response to climate change. (Florida Politics)

STORAGE: Federal regulators have approved the New York grid operator’s rules to incorporate energy storage into the real-time energy market. (Platts)

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EFFICIENCY: Tennessee’s largest mansion gets a major energy efficiency retrofit, reducing monthly utility bills by several thousand dollars. (Knoxville News Sentinel)

COMMENTARY: In a joint letter, 37 electric utilities operating in 42 states oppose a rollback of federal lighting efficiency standards. (NRDC)

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