NUCLEAR: Two Montana bills focused on nuclear power pass their committees, one approving a feasibility study on replacing the Colstrip power plant’s coal-fired boilers with small nuclear reactors. (Montana Standard, S&P Global) 

OIL & GAS:
An appeals court stops the construction of a $2 billion-plus ConocoPhillips oil project on Alaska’s North Slope. (Anchorage Daily News)
Permian Basin oil production is adversely impacted by the coldest winter weather in 30 years, dropping by as much as one million barrels per day. (Bloomberg)
Kern County, California’s proposed updated oil and gas zoning ordinance “could have a profound effect” on disadvantaged communities given the state’s lack of setback rules for wells. (Grist)
A California oil refinery due to cease operations in two years could be redeveloped for recreational activities, depending on whether the state buys or leases the property. (Sacramento Bee)
A bill that would stop fracking permits being issued in New Mexico begins advancing through the state’s senate, narrowly passing a committee vote. (Albuquerque Journal)

COAL: A rural Colorado town is hoping the local community college will aid its economic transition from coal, but a lack of funding threatens its plans. (Chalkbeat)

POLICY: A New Mexico Senate committee rejects changes to the state’s Energy Transition Act aimed at providing better protection for consumers. (Santa Fe New Mexican)

SOLAR: Hopes abound in New Mexico for a law to pass this legislative session countering an existing one prohibiting community solar development in non-tribal areas. (Albuquerque Journal)

PUBLIC LANDS:
Interior secretary nominee Deb Haaland faces opposition from the oil and gas industry given her environmental politics which are a stark contrast to predecessors. (Wall Street Journal)
The Bureau of Land Management postpones a planned Colorado oil and gas lease sale and restarts the permitting process for a California solar farm. (Denver Post, Palm Springs Desert Sun)

MICROGRIDS: A small Central California town is building its own microgrid, aiming to have reliable power for agricultural and industrial businesses. (San Francisco Chronicle)

UTILITIES: New Mexico’s largest power utility gave $470,000 to a dark money group responsible for mailers and robo-calls in five state senate Democratic primary races, and was the group’s only funding source. (New Mexico In Depth)

COMMENTARY:
A Montana Petroleum Association official laments President Biden’s cancellation of the Keystone XL Pipeline. (Fairfield Sun Times)
A Utah conservation advocate calls for the state’s national monuments to be restored and permanently protected from fossil fuel interests. (Los Angeles Times)
An Alaska electric trade association official advocates for modern infrastructure investments that will ensure a clean energy future for the state. (Anchorage Daily News)
An Oregon high school senior says Gov. Kate Brown’s Climate Protection Program needs to tackle the state’s largest polluters. (Portland Tribune)

Lisa Ellwood

Lisa is a Lenape and Nanticoke Native American freelance journalist, editor and writer currently based in the U.K. She has more than two decades’ experience working in corporate communications and print and digital media. She compiles the Western Energy News daily email digest. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Temple University; her specializations include data journalism and visualization. She is a member of the Native American Journalists Association, Investigative Reporters & Editors, Society of Professional Journalists, and the National Union of Journalists (U.K.).