Southeast Energy News

Grid operators’ study looks to improve coordination along “seam”

SOLAR: Virginia leaps into the top 10 in an annual ranking of K-12 school solar capacity following several years of policy progress. (Energy News Network)

ALSO:
• Ameresco, Duke Energy and the military partner on an 11 MW floating solar microgrid project at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. (Microgrid Knowledge)
• A Virginia town council considers a proposal to build a 15 to 20 MW solar array as a way to generate revenue from a property it owns. (Loudoun Now)
• A nonprofit delivered 600 solar-powered lights over the weekend to people in Southwest Louisiana still left without power from Hurricane Laura. (KPLC)

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GRID: The Southwest Power Pool and Midcontinent Independent System Operator announce a yearlong study to improve coordination along the “seam” where their grid boundaries interconnect. (Arkansas Business)

CLIMATE:
• Critics say Duke Energy is setting up “a false dichotomy” between keeping rates low and achieving climate goals, and that the utility’s latest integrated resource plan in North Carolina falls short on both fronts. (WFAE)
• Houston faces longer and hotter summers, heavier bouts of rain, and stronger hurricanes due to climate change, a new report says. (Houston Chronicle)

COAL:
A proposed class-action settlement would pay some 1,700 employees of a bankrupt coal mining company up to $1.73 million in back pay. (Associated Press)
• A Virginia legislative oversight commission recommends eliminating the state’s coal mine tax credits, saying they are no longer relevant. (Roanoke Times)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Workers at an electric vehicle battery plant under construction in Georgia say they don’t feel safe at the job site and that contractors are ignoring safety rules to finish the multi-billion dollar facility on schedule. (Fox 5)

UTILITIES:
• Utilities’ corporate vows to fight for racial and social equity are being tested as states lift consumer protections barring service disconnections. (E&E News)
• South Carolina regulators consider a proposal to make it illegal for utilities to sell private information unless the customer agrees. (Post and Courier)
• Louisiana power companies divert resources from Hurricane Laura restorations as they brace for a second hurricane in less than a month. (NOLA.com)

WIND:
• Chemical and consumer goods company Henkel signs a virtual power purchase agreement to source 100% of its U.S. electricity from a Texas wind farm. (Environment + Energy Leader)
• Avangrid Renewables opens a field office in Virginia Beach to support offshore wind project development in the region. (OffshoreWind.biz)

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OIL & GAS:
• The U.S. EPA denies ethanol blending waivers to a group of petroleum refiners in 14 states after offering the industry exemptions for years. (Associated Press)
• Louisiana officials say it’s still too soon to say how much oil spilled when Hurricane Laura made landfall near more than 1,400 active and 480 orphaned oil wells, but the sheen can be seen for miles. (Weather Channel)

COMMENTARY:
• A South Carolina editorial board encourages local officials to take “a deep, thoughtful look” at a proposed $166 million solar farm. (My Horry News)
• Hurricane Laura was a toxic harbinger of climate disasters to come, writes a director at the nonprofit Institute for Southern Studies. (Louisiana Weekly)

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