Southeast Energy News

Lawmakers in Carolinas seek to break utilities’ monopolies

UTILITIES: A group of lawmakers from North and South Carolina propose legislation that would study electricity market reforms in order to break up Duke and Dominion Energy’s monopolies and create a more competitive system. (WFAE)

ALSO: Western North Carolina residents address utility regulators at a hearing over Duke Energy’s proposal to raise rates to pay for coal ash cleanup and coal plant closures. (News Herald)

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COAL ASH:
Two bills are introduced in Georgia: one that would require coal ash to be stored in facilities at least as secure as municipal landfills; another to raise the fee local governments can collect for dumping coal ash in landfills. (WABE)
Georgia Power recorded an increase of $3.1 billion in December 2018 for expected costs related to coal ash regulations, and the 2020 update will be released soon. (Saporta Report)

COAL:
Two of the largest coal-fired power plant retirements in the U.S. in 2020 are happening in Kentucky. (WFPL)
Kentucky miners who organized a protest over unpaid wages struggle to find work in a dying industry. (WYMT)

OIL & GAS:
The U.S. Energy Information Administration predicts lower natural gas prices due to production outpacing demand, so Texas oil and gas industry interests expect exports to grow. (Corpus Christi Caller Times)
Oil and gas companies need to invest in clean energy in order to survive, according to the International Energy Agency. (Houston Chronicle)
Kinder Morgan faces a $55,000 fine over a 2018 explosion at its liquefied natural gas export plant near Savannah, Georgia, raising safety concerns about the facilities. (E&E News, subscription)

PIPELINES:
Texas landowners receive letters about a cross-state pipeline proposed to carry natural gas from the Permian Basin to Louisiana. (San Angelo Standard-Times)
A conservation group in Texas joins a lawsuit over threats to endangered species along the route of Kinder Morgan’s Permian Highway Pipeline. (San Antonio Express News)

RENEWABLES: Sprint says it will power all of its retail locations, office, and cell towers in Virginia with 100% renewable energy. (Renewables Now)

COMMENTARY:
West Virginia needs to build a better future than the coal industry, a retired federal employee writes. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)
West Virginia needs to expand a major natural gas project to keep up with demand, industry representatives write. (WV News) 
The Virginia Clean Economy Act would save ratepayers and businesses money all across Virginia’s electrical grid and needs support, two clean energy advocates say. (Washington Post)

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