U.S. Energy News

House votes to delay Obama-era smog reductions

REGULATION: House lawmakers pass a bill delaying the implementation of Obama-era smog reductions and switch EPA mandated reviews from every five years to every 10 years. (Associated Press)

CAP-AND-TRADE: California’s decision to extend its cap-and-trade program is a win for cleantech companies and will provide direct revenue to state programs. (Greentech Media)

CLIMATE: A climate change lawsuit filed by 21 youths against the federal government is scientifically sound, according to a report by a former NASA scientist. (ThinkProgress)

UTILITIES: An official’s recommendation to reject a proposed 100 percent renewable energy offering by Appalachian Power Co. is heightening the debate over clean energy options in Virginia. (Southeast Energy News)

GRID:
• Energy Secretary Rick Perry says he is “breathlessly waiting” to see a DOE electric grid reliability study after a draft copy was leaked to reporters last week. (ThinkProgress)
• Ahead of a highly anticipated grid study, Energy Secretary Rick Perry is grappling with debates inside his department about whether wind and solar threaten reliability. (E&E News)

SOLAR:
• A new ordinance will requires new houses in South Miami to have solar panels. (Miami Herald)
• A Rhode Island town approves the construction of a 13.8-megawatt solar installation that will require 60 acres of forest to be clear cut. (Westerly Sun)
• California’s new net-metering system cuts down on utility bill deductions from residential solar and slashes the value of solar during midday, and analysts say the changes mean customers should be installing larger rooftop arrays. (Greentech Media)
Construction begins on a one-megawatt solar project that is set to become Maine’s largest municipally owned array. (Portland Press Herald)
• A major utility in Michigan is partnering with a well-known property developer to launch its first solar-plus-storage project in a Grand Rapids neighborhood. (Midwest Energy News)

WIND: Oregon regulators grant approval for developers to install the largest turbines ever deployed in the Pacific Northwest, which could have rotor diameters of 136 meters. (Portland Business Journal)

RENEWABLES:
• With Kentucky’s coal jobs at their lowest level since 1898, state officials are looking to improve energy efficiency and expand the state’s renewable-energy portfolio. (CNBC)
• President Trump’s pro-fossil fuel agenda hasn’t damaged investor support for clean energy, according to an index of 40 publicly-traded companies that benefit from reduced fossil fuel consumption. (Bloomberg)

NUCLEAR: A report from environmental groups urges South Carolina regulators to stop construction at the Summer nuclear plant, saying it could save utility customers as much as $10 billion. (Associated Press)

OIL & GAS:
• Energy Secretary Rick Perry wants to increase exports of natural gas in an effort to achieve global “energy dominance.” (Associated Press)
• Democrats and environmentalists are calling a House GOP budget proposal a veiled attempt to clear the way for drilling in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. (The Hill)

PIPELINES:
• A group of nuns in Pennsylvania is suing the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for allowing a natural gas pipeline to be built through their property, saying the move violates their religious freedom. (Philadelphia Inquirer)
• The Army Corps of Engineers says it will take several months to complete an environmental review of the Dakota Access pipeline and is advocating for the pipeline to remain open during that time. (Associated Press)

COAL:
• Coal exports increased by 58 percent in the first quarter of 2017 compared to the same period last year, according to a report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
• Wyoming’s coal industry has rebounded after laying off nearly 1,000 workers between 2015 and 2016, but most of those jobs are unlikely to return. (Casper Star-Tribune)

DIVESTMENT: A nonprofit group assembles a database of the top 120 companies seeking to expand coal generation to inform investors about divesting from them. (Huffington Post)

COMMENTARY:
• The offshore wind industry is finally reaching maturity and represents billions in economic opportunity for U.S. coastal cities, says the communications director at Energy Innovation. (Forbes)
• Utility executives gathered in Chicago this week give their ideas of how the grid of the future can run on renewable energy. (Forbes)

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