U.S. Energy News

Journal shows coal industry knew of climate threat in 1960s

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CLIMATE: A University of Tennessee researcher unearths an industry journal from 1966 showing coal executives knew increasing levels of carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels would harm the climate. (Huffington Post)

POLICY:
• Democrats release their first major piece of legislation to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 that will first push federal government agencies to hit the goal. (The Hill)
• Federal lawmakers are optimistic that a deal will be struck by the end of the year to extend various clean energy tax credits. (E&E News, subscription)

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NATURAL GAS: The California Restaurant Association is suing Berkeley over the city’s natural gas ban, saying it violates existing law and will hurt businesses. (San Francisco Chronicle)

COAL:
• Air pollution from Midwestern coal plants harms the health of residents in eastern states, and exposure varies by race and income, researchers find. (Grist)
An Indiana utility expects to save up to $4 billion over the next decade by retiring its coal plants and transitioning to a 65% renewable energy portfolio. (Times of Northwest Indiana)

OVERSIGHT: A survey of dozens of state utility commissions shows regulators increasingly grappling with changes to energy production, though centralized power plants are still expected to dominate over the next decade. (Power Magazine)

SOLAR:
• Recent earnings reports show major solar companies maintaining growth in residential installations. (Greentech Media)
Ohio regulators reject AEP’s proposal to pass costs for 400 MW of solar to customers, though the projects could still move forward with interested off-takers. (Greentech Media)
Cincinnati enters into a 20-year agreement to purchase power from a large-scale solar project that city officials say is the largest municipal solar project in the country. (Cincinnati Enquirer)
• A new study finds customers in Northeast states save as much with solar as those in warmer states, in part because solar panels are more efficient in cold weather. (The Day)

WIND:
Ohio legislation allowing for a local referendum on wind projects after approval by a state siting board would continue roadblocks for wind development in the state, critics say. (Energy News Network)
• A developer of offshore wind transmission submits its first application to federal regulators in its bid to build a network that would interconnect several projects in southern New England. (Bloomberg)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• In an effort to challenge Detroit automakers, Elon Musk unveils Tesla’s new electric pickup truck in Los Angeles, which is drawing criticism for a design some liken to dystopian sci-fi movies. (Reuters, Verge, CNBC)
• Waste management companies see growing potential in transitioning to electrified fleets, though technology challenges remain. (Waste Dive)

PIPELINES:
Investigators hired by North Carolina Republicans find that Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper “improperly used the authority and influence of his office” to approve Atlantic Coast Pipeline permits but did not personally benefit from them. (News & Observer)
• Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers signs a bill making it a felony to trespass or damage oil and gas pipelines, which critics say violates free speech rights and targets Native Americans. (Associated Press)

OIL & GAS:
Federal regulators approve three controversial liquefied natural gas projects proposed in south Texas. (Texas Tribune)
The Trump administration is set to consider expanded oil drilling and a new management plan for Alaska’s National Petroleum Reserve. (Associated Press)
Colorado regulators approve new rules creating the first-ever public mapping of underground oil and gas lines. (Denver Post)

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POLLUTION: Georgia, known for its business-friendly culture, begins to push back against polluting industries and environmentally hazardous sites like coal ash landfills. (Christian Science Monitor)

COMMENTARY: Companies control about three-fourths of U.S. energy consumption but most do not set energy-saving targets or have comprehensive efficiency plans, advocates say. (American Council for an Energy-Efficiency Economy)

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