U.S. Energy News

How Rick Perry blew off Congress and slow-walked clean energy

POLICY: During his nearly three-year tenure as Energy Secretary, Rick Perry delayed clean energy grants, slow-walked hiring, and left clean energy programs understaffed even as Congress ordered more spending. (Houston Chronicle)

ALSO:
Federal stimulus legislation passed during the 2009 recession played a significant role in advancing clean energy, in contrast to the bills being passed in response to coronavirus today. (Los Angeles Times)
• Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam signs a major clean energy bill into law and commits the state to joining the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. (WDBJ) 

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WIND: Massachusetts is poised to be a part of an economic boom created by offshore wind, and activists want to ensure that low-income communities and people of color share in the prosperity. (Energy News Network)

PIPELINES: Atlantic Coast Pipeline opponents hope the project will be stopped by a new Virginia law requiring regulators to consider whether pipeline capacity is needed for reliability before approving projects. (Energy News Network)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
Ohio electric vehicle bills are among state legislation on hold across the country as lawmakers grapple with the coronavirus. (Energy News Network)
A California bus operator has saved an average of 40% on monthly power bills since hiring a professional electric bus fleet-charging service. (Greentech Media)

UTILITIES:
• Several utility rate cases have been extended or delayed in about a dozen states as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. (S&P Global)
• Despite extra federal funding, Tennessee electric utilities continue to cut off service to families who can’t pay during the coronavirus pandemic. (HuffPost)

GRID:
• The pandemic is changing power usage, with the “duck curve” becoming common in areas with lots of renewables like California. (Grist)
New York’s grid operator says electricity demand in New York City fell by as much as 18% in the first weeks of the pandemic. (Greentech Media)

COAL:
• Mining and public health experts raise alarms about operating coal mines during the pandemic, which could put miners and communities at risk. (Beckley Register-Herald)
Chicago officials are furious following the demolition of a smokestack at a former coal plant, which covered the surrounding Little Village neighborhood in dust on Saturday. (Chicago Sun-Times)

OIL & GAS:
• U.S. lenders are preparing to seize assets and become operators of oil and gas fields to avoid loan losses as energy companies go bankrupt. (Reuters)
• As oil prices collapse, Pennsylvania faces a looming crisis of abandoned wells in the Allegheny National Forest. (Associated Press)
• A decade after Deepwater Horizon, the federal office that regulates offshore drilling is marred by staff distrust and management problems. (E&E News, subscription)
BP’s $5.6 billion deal to take over Hilcorp’s Prudhoe Bay, Alaska assets is in jeopardy because of plummeting oil prices. (Wall Street Journal, subscription)

CLIMATE:
Advocates pushing for a carbon tax say it would be a fair way to compensate tribes for the disproportionate climate change impacts they are experiencing. (Reuters)
Baltimore and Rhode Island climate lawsuits against oil companies allege deceptive behavior in their attempts to mischaracterize their knowledge of climate impacts of fossil fuels. (DeSmog) 

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NUCLEAR: As more Plant Vogtle workers become sick with COVID-19, Southern Company says the project’s progress may be disrupted. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

COMMENTARY: The coronavirus pandemic showed us a world without smog; a columnist asks whether electric cars could do so permanently. (Wall Street Journal, subscription)

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