ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE: Coastal Louisiana tribes who are not federally recognized navigate a complex bureaucracy of parish, state and federal agencies to receive federal aid for cleanup from Hurricane Ida. (Southerly/Houma Courier)

COAL:
• Southern Co. announces it will shutter two-thirds of its coal fleet, and other companies prepare to close plants across the Southeast due to stricter federal wastewater pollution controls. (Associated Press)
• A 12-year high in coal prices driven by pandemic recovery and rising inflation may complicate efforts to persuade U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin to support Democrats’ reconciliation bill. (Bloomberg)

TRANSITION: Despite existing in the shadow of one of the state’s largest metro areas and having had decades to transition its economy away from coal, a northern West Virginia community still struggles with the decline of the industry. (Mountain State Spotlight)

SOLAR: Kentucky regulators have approved 13 utility-scale solar projects over two years, including four in the last month, for companies who sell electricity in wholesale markets or directly to companies. (WKYU)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• Hyundai announces plans to make electric vehicles at its U.S. factories in Alabama and Georgia but hesitates due to a potential tax credit for U.S.- and union-made EVs. (Korea Herald)
• As reports emerge that Toyota is considering a North Carolina site for a battery plant, the site’s developers file a plan to grade the area for “an approximate 1,000-acre automotive storage battery manufacturing, production, and assembly facility.” (Greensboro News & Record)
• State filings show Tesla plans to spend more than $1 billion and complete construction by the end of this year on a new vehicle factory in Austin, Texas. (Reuters)
• Duke Energy and electric cooperatives in South Carolina grapple with the need to install chargers and other infrastructure to support the emerging electric vehicle industry. (Upstate Business Journal)

OIL & GAS:
• President Biden will announce a plan today to tap oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve as part of a coordinated international effort. (CBS News)
• An increase in Texas gas and oil production, including plans to extract 50% more in the Permian Basin alone, clashes with climate projections calling for dramatic fossil fuel production cuts. (Spectrum News)
• Gas utilities in Oklahoma and Florida ask state regulators for rate increases to cover rising gas prices. (KOKI, News Service of Florida)
• Alabama Power asks state regulators for permission to buy a 743 MW gas-fired power plant despite rising gas prices and its parent company’s net-zero emissions target. (Energy and Policy Institute)

CLIMATE: A northwestern Arkansas city council votes unanimously to begin drafting a natural environment, ecosystems and climate resilience plan. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)

CRYPTOCURRENCY: Texas’ vulnerable power grid will face an estimated 5,000 MW surge in electricity demand from cryptocurrency miners heading to the state for its cheap power and laissez-faire regulation. (Bloomberg)

COMMENTARY: Georgia could boost its economy by $7.9 billion and slash carbon emissions by transitioning electric cars, trucks, and buses, writes a clean energy policy analyst. (Drawdown Georgia)

Mason Adams

Mason has worked as a journalist since 2001, covering Appalachian communities and the issues that affect them. He compiles the Southeast Energy News digest. Mason previously worked as a wildlife biologist before moving into journalism by freelancing at Coast Weekly in Monterey, California, before taking an internship in 2001 at High Country News. He wrote for the Enterprise Mountaineer in western North Carolina and the Roanoke Times in western Virginia before going freelance in 2012. His work has appeared in Southerly, Daily Yonder, Mother Jones, Huffington Post, WVPB’s Inside Appalachia and elsewhere. Mason was born and raised in Clifton Forge, Virginia, and now lives with his family and a small herd of goats in Floyd County, Virginia.