U.S. Energy News

JinkoSolar will open Florida factory to make tariff-free panels

SOLAR: Chinese manufacturer JinkoSolar will spend $50 million to build a factory in Florida to avoid the Trump administration’s tariffs on imported solar products. (Greentech Media)

WIND: Moody’s Investor Services predicts U.S. offshore wind will grow rapidly, especially in Northeast states such as New Jersey, New York and Massachusetts. (NJ Spotlight)

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RENEWABLES: A Rocky Mountain Institute paper sparks debate over whether nuclear power or renewables are more effective for decarbonizing the grid. (Greentech Media)

HYDROPOWER: A Maine company develops a submersible generator that collects power from shallow rivers and tidal basins. (VOA news)

BIOMASS: Researchers in northern Minnesota are developing a “biocoal” product made from woody biomass they hope can displace coal to fuel power plants. (Midwest Energy News)

Hawaiian Electric’s new “electrification of transportation” roadmap predicts most personal light duty vehicles in the state will be powered by clean energy by 2045. (Pacific Business News)
Tesla recalls 123,000 Model S sedans to fix a bolt designed to assist with power steering, following a fatal Model X crash in California last week. (Quartz, Reuters)

CARBON CAPTURE: A bipartisan group of senators introduces a bill to promote carbon capture research and development. (Quartz)

EMISSIONS: U.S. emissions from burning jet fuel increased in 2017, offsetting about 40 percent of the gains from declining coal use, according to a new analysis. (Quartz)

An expected EPA plan to relax fuel efficiency standards is not the “sensible” plan automakers requested, says a top executive for Honda. (New York Times, The Hill)
An Obama-era rule designed to reduce methane emissions on public lands has taken effect, but the Interior Department isn’t prepared to enforce it. (E&E News)

EPA: The EPA’s top ethics official says Administrator Scott Pruitt didn’t violate any rules by leasing a condo linked to a prominent fossil fuel lobbyist. (The Hill)

UTILITIES: A subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp. files for bankruptcy days after the company petitioned the Trump administration to save coal and nuclear power plants from closing. (Washington Post)

GRID: Ameren is testing utility pole sensors that could alert it to maintenance issues and maybe someday play a bigger role in managing the electric grid. (Midwest Energy News)

OFFSHORE DRILLING: The Trump administration proposes opening Alaska’s Beaufort Sea to oil drilling next year. (InsideClimate News)

PIPELINES: Proposed legislation in Louisiana would penalize pipeline vandals, following damage to equipment used to build the controversial Bayou Bridge project. (Axios)

• A new law in Kentucky prevents radiologists from judging X-rays in state black lung claims, leaving diagnoses mostly to lung and respiratory physicians who mostly work for coal companies. (WAMU)
• A group of Kentucky coal companies file a lawsuit against Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke over his disapproval of state regulations related to water protection, saying it would unfairly increase the cost to cleanup abandoned mines. (Courthouse News Service)
• West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice is ordered to pay $9.4 million for defaulting on a loan related to a coal company he owns. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

COAL ASH:  Major utilities find new evidence of groundwater contamination at coal power plants nationwide. (Associated Press)

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CLIMATE: The Securities and Exchange Commission allowed a Texas oil company to preemptively kill a shareholder resolution on climate change without a vote, setting a precedent to fight climate resolutions. (Axios)

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is “an embarrassment” and should be fired for endangering the planet, writes the Los Angeles Times editorial board.
• Congress should pass a temporary federal tax credit to help preserve at least some of the country’s remaining coal plants until policymakers can ensure the power grid is reliable, says the president of a national coal trade organization. (Washington Examiner)
• FirstEnergy’s bailout scheme for its coal and nuclear power plants would cost taxpayers billions of dollars and should be rejected by the U.S. Department of Energy, says a sustainable energy analyst. (Natural Resources Defense Council)

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