U.S. Energy News

Major tech firms voice support for Clean Power Plan

CLEAN POWER PLAN: Apple, Google and other large tech firms file a brief in support of the Clean Power Plan, along with coalitions of more than 200 current and former members of Congress and more than 50 U.S. cities. (Engadget, ThinkProgress, Solar Industry Magazine)

NATURAL GAS:
• A federal task force will investigate the Aliso Canyon natural gas leak. (Reuters)
• Florida utilities saw nearly $6 billion in losses from 2002-2015 due to bad bets on natural gas prices, causing regulators in other states to take notice. (Wall Street Journal)

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SOLAR:
• Operators of the Ivanpah solar plant say it is now on track to meet production targets. (Bloomberg)
• Solar companies are targeting New York farmland, and some community leaders are urging caution. (Associated Press)
• “Solar is the new granite countertop” for realtors in a Connecticut city. (Fairfield Daily Voice)
• A former NBA player’s company helps bring solar power and living-wage jobs to low income residents of Washington, D.C. (CNN Money)

PIPELINES:
TransCanada proposes another cross-border pipeline, this time to carry oil from North Dakota into Canada. (Forum News Service)
Federal regulators uphold a $2.6 million fine against ExxonMobil for the Mayflower pipeline spill. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)

RENEWABLES:
• Vermont lawmakers advance amendments that would give local governments more say over wind and solar siting. (Barre-Montpelier Times Argus)
• Clean energy makes the agenda at a fossil fuel-focused Montana energy summit. (Billings Gazette)
• A coalition of New Mexico groups calls for more renewable energy in the state. (Associated Press)

GRID:
• A Hawaii utility says its plan to install smart meters for 455,000 customers will cost $340 million. (Pacific Business Journal)
• Michigan’s second-largest utility partners with a state university on an energy storage pilot project. (Midwest Energy News)
A report highlights security weaknesses in the grid discovered in a simulated cyberattack last fall. (EnergyWire)

TRANSMISSION: It is not yet clear whether the Department of Energy’s support of Clean Line transmission projects will override the opposition of Missouri regulators. (Hannibal Courier-Post)

COAL:
• Analysts say layoffs signal a “rebalancing” in production that could help the industry in the long term. (Billings Gazette)
• Inaction by smaller companies increases concerns that taxpayers will be on the hook for cleaning up larger firms’ mines. (Washington Post)
• A new report finds West Virginia is in an economic recession, largely due to coal’s decline. (The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register)
Developers of a Washington state coal port stop work amid tribal opposition. (Seattle Times)
• A judge rejects a challenge attempting to void a Montana coal lease. (Billings Gazette)

OFFSHORE DRILLING: House Republicans push back on offshore drilling regulations drafted in response to the Deepwater Horizon spill. (The Hill)

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UTILITIES: The “mindset of utilities” means some states will see more benefits from clean energy than others. (GreenBiz)

COMMENTARY:
• Why we need to pay attention to scientists’ latest warning on sea levels. (National Geographic)
• “The prospect of keeping energy affordable while saving the planet should inspire leaders to bolder action.” (New York Times)

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