SOLAR: Louisiana rooftop solar systems largely survived Hurricane Ida, allowing homeowners to keep power on during the extensive blackouts that followed, while a smaller number with battery storage were able to share with their neighbors, too. (NOLA.com)

ALSO:
• Florida county officials hear plans for an 850-acre solar farm to be built by Florida Power and Light and Gulf Power. (WMBB)
• A Dominion Energy filing with Virginia regulators includes plans for 11 utility-scale solar projects and multiple storage projects. (news release)
• Kentucky lawmakers consider the potential to expand the state’s renewable energy portfolio by growing the solar industry. (WFPL)

GRID:
• Federal data shows West Virginia leads the nation in power outages without major events even though power companies have spent more than $1 billion over 10 years on maintenance and improvements. (WSAZ)
• A snake gets into Duke Energy equipment in a North Carolina substation, knocking out power to more than 1,400 customers. (WGHP)

CARBON CAPTURE: Exxon Mobil’s planned carbon-capture project on the Gulf Coast in Texas wins support from 11 of the world’s biggest refiners and chemical manufacturers. (Bloomberg)

WIND: The Southwestern Electric Power Co. announces the beginning of operations for the second phase of its wind farm, with next year’s third phase completing plans to generate 1,485 MW for Arkansas, Louisiana and Oklahoma. (Arkansas Nonprofit News Network)

COAL:
Kentucky coal boosters anticipate a bump for the state’s mines as grids turn to coal to meet global electricity demand that was 5% higher than pre-pandemic levels in the first half of 2021. (Spectrum News 1)
• Energy and environmental companies advance projects to extract rare earth materials from coal and coal waste for electronics, wind turbines and other technologies. (S&P Global)
• Virginia regulators find state and federal violations at a coal mine slated for reclamation, which has now been accelerated due to the presence of trespassers using the property for ATV riding. (WFHG)

POLITICS:
• West Virginia U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin’s reluctance to shift from fossil fuels imperils a budget plan that most Democratic senators see as the last best hope to make deep cuts in greenhouse gases necessary to curb global warming. (Inside Climate News)
Virginia’s major-party candidates for governor split on energy policy during a debate, with the Republican saying a mandate for all-renewable energy by 2045 is unrealistic and ignores “clean natural gas,” while the Democrat says he’d accelerate the end of fossil fuels even more. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
• Texas climate change activists call out seven congressional Democrats from the state for resisting the Biden administration’s attempt to repeal fossil fuel subsidies to help pay for a $3.5 trillion budget bill. (Texas Signal)

PIPELINES:
• Dominion Energy plans to bore beneath the French Broad River in North Carolina for three crossings as it builds an 11-mile gas line. (Asheville Citizen-Times)
• A New Mexico city council approves an easement for a crude oil pipeline that’s part of a network extending into Texas. (Carlsbad Current Argus)

CRYPTOCURRENCY: A Texas county that saw a coal-fired power plant close in 2017 puts its hopes in the largest bitcoin mining facility in the country to spark economic growth. (KBTX)

ACTIVISM: The Mothers Out Front group in coastal Virginia seeks to recruit more moms to take on the challenges of climate change and coastal resiliency. (WAVY)

COMMENTARY:
• A West Virginia newspaper editorial board applauds the announcement of $46 million in Appalachian Regional Commission grants to help coal communities transition to clean energy. (Exponent Telegram)
• The University of Florida’s recently approved plan to build a 34 MW natural gas-fired plant runs counter to its commitment to 100% clean energy by 2040, writes a climate activist. (Gainesville Sun)

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.