PIPELINES: Environmental groups file a lawsuit to reverse the permit for the Byhalia Connection pipeline, alleging the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers didn’t meet public input requirements or conduct a substantive environmental analysis. (Memphis Commercial Appeal)

BIOGAS: North Carolina regulators approve water quality permits for four hog farms to install biogas digesters as part of a renewable natural gas project. (Fayetteville Observer)

***SPONSORED LINK: Receive continuing education credits, learn about new energy solutions and best practices, and connect with other energy industry professionals at the 2021 State Energy (Virtual) Conference of North Carolina, April 19-22. Learn more and register at www.NCenergyconference.com. *** 

SUSTAINABILITY: A college student wins a “young heroes” award for his urban farming project that has delivered fresh produce to food deserts around Washington, D.C.. (Energy News Network)

UTILITIES:
• Thomas Farrell, who led Dominion Energy for 15 years, dies one day after retiring as the utility’s executive board chairman. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
• Appalachian Power appeals Virginia regulators’ denial of a rate increase to the state supreme court in a case that could shake up the constitutionality of state law governing utilities’ earnings. (Virginia Mercury)

OIL & GAS:
• Louisiana still holds more than $700,000 in class action settlement funds from the 2010 BP oil spill because people and businesses affected haven’t cashed their checks. (Associated Press)
• Raw materials and consumer goods produced by Texas’ refineries and petrochemical plants remain in short supply more than six weeks after February’s winter storm and resulting outages brought the industry to a halt. (Houston Chronicle)

COAL:
• Kentucky crews repair a road and water for the 10th time in six years due to recurring flooding worsened by chronic environmental violations at a coal mine likely slated for abandonment by bankrupt operator Blackjewel. (Lexington Herald Leader)
• A coal company pays more than $200,000 to clear a Kentucky mine of environmental violations and resume production. (Lexington Herald Leader)
• West Virginia lawmakers advance a bill to give severance tax rebates to coal companies. (WOWK)
• Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s proposal to funnel savings from cutting the state’s coal tax credit toward higher education could mean a 25% cut to a coalfield-region economic development authority. (Kingsport Times News)

SOLAR: A national solar power finance firm opens in Arkansas, shaking up the industry and providing residents new pathways to pay for rooftop systems. (Arkansas Business)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: President Joe Biden’s plan to expand electric vehicles faces challenges from the nation’s weak battery supply chain, which could be further complicated by a trade dispute involving a Korean battery maker’s plan to build a Georgia factory. (Washington Post)

GRID: A 15-mile stretch of the Appalachian Trail near the Virginia/West Virginia border remains closed after a high-voltage power line fell during an ice storm in February. (Roanoke Times)

***SPONSORED LINK: NCSEA’s Making Energy Work webinar series is back by popular demand! Join hundreds of attendees from across the country to get the latest scoop on trending clean energy topics sweeping the industry. Register today, where energy policy gets to work: www.makingenergywork.com/2021.***

EMISSIONS: A Kentucky chemical plant releases emissions that do more damage to the climate than 750,000 cars, though those effects are obscured by the EPA’s uncoordinated greenhouse gas disclosures. (Inside Climate News)

COMMENTARY:
• Offshore wind could reinvent and power a newly clean economy in North Carolina, writes an editorial board. (Raleigh News & Observer)
• Electric vehicles and a more reliable network of chargers represent a smart investment in Florida’s resilience against climate change, writes a state lawmaker. (Herald-Tribune)
• A West Virginia political writer rails on state lawmakers for claiming they want to grow the economy while passing measures to shore up the struggling coal industry and placing new restrictions on renewables. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)
• The winter storm that froze Texas and left more than 200 dead shined a light on the state’s broken governance, writes an editorial board. (Houston Chronicle)

Mason Adams

Mason Adams

Mason has worked as a journalist since 2001, covering Appalachian communities and the issues that affect them. He compiles the Southeast Energy News digest. Mason previously worked as a wildlife biologist before moving into journalism by freelancing at Coast Weekly in Monterey, California, before taking an internship in 2001 at High Country News. He wrote for the Enterprise Mountaineer in western North Carolina and the Roanoke Times in western Virginia before going freelance in 2012. His work has appeared in Southerly, Daily Yonder, Mother Jones, Huffington Post, WVPB’s Inside Appalachia and elsewhere. Mason was born and raised in Clifton Forge, Virginia, and now lives with his family and a small herd of goats in Floyd County, Virginia.