Western Energy News

Groups urge California to push ahead on climate issues

POLLUTION: California groups are asking Gov. Gavin Newsom and state air regulators to stay on track with air, public health, and climate regulations during the coronavirus crisis. (Bloomberg Environment)

ALSO: California’s attorney general says the state will take “any steps necessary, including legal action” to preserve its authority to set vehicle emission standards. (CalMatters)

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CALIFORNIA:
PG&E’s CEO earned $18.5 million in 2019, but $11.1 million of that is in stock options that are worthless for now. (San Francisco Chronicle)
Some of PG&E’s wildfire victims are campaigning to vote down the utility’s bankruptcy exit plan, concerned that half of their settlement payments are in company shares. (Wall Street Journal)
California community choice aggregators and electric service providers are concerned about a proposal by state regulators whereby PG&E and Southern California Edison would be “central procurement entities.” (Utility Dive)

TRANSMISSION: A new PG&E case study finds that burying a portion of distribution lines underground to prevent wildfires is cost-effective. (Transmission and Distribution World)

BIOGAS: An Oregon utility is preparing to spend $30 million on renewable natural gas infrastructure following passage of a law last fall allowing the investments. (Energy News Network)

STORAGE: A San Diego Gas & Electric project shows how grid-scale vanadium batteries could help California achieve its zero carbon goals by storing excess electricity. (Wired)

COAL: New Mexico regulators approve Public Service Company of New Mexico’s plan to abandon the San Juan Generating Station. (Santa Fe New Mexican)

FOSSIL FUELS: Wyoming’s fossil fuel industries are asking Gov. Mark Gordon to classify mining and drilling operations as “essential” activities in the event of a shelter-in-place order due to the coronavirus pandemic. (Casper Star-Tribune)

OIL & GAS: Colorado’s oil and gas producers are looking to “hedging” to help with market volatility from plummeting prices and the coronavirus pandemic. (Colorado Sun)

PUBLIC LANDS: Republican members of Utah’s congressional delegation want the Interior Department to waive or reduce federal royalty payments on oil, gas and coal production during the coronavirus crisis. (Deseret News)

NUCLEAR: A nuclear waste repository in New Mexico has reduced operations over the past three months due to the coronavirus outbreak. (Carlsbad Current-Argus)

UTILITIES:
California utilities fear proposed changes to the state’s renewable portfolio standard program confidentiality rules could lead to “harmful market manipulation.” (Utility Dive)
• A Colorado utility wants to delay filing its integrated resource plan until December because of the coronavirus pandemic. (Longmont Times-Call)
Montana Gov. Steve Bullock is suspending utility shutoffs during the state’s stay-at-home order. (Helena Independent Record)
NorthWestern Energy announces $300,000 in aid to help communities the utility serves with coronavirus efforts. (Montana Standard)

SOLAR:
• California-based solar installer Sunrun maintained its top position in U.S. residential solar rankings in the final quarter of 2019. (Greentech Media)
• An Arizona-based rooftop solar contractor is providing free voluntary coronavirus testing for its workers. (Phoenix Business Journal)

COMMENTARY: A former California legislator says the state’s next renewable energy goal should be one million solar batteries by 2028. (CalMatters)

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