• States would set up their own systems for permitting coal ash sites and block several requirements in the EPA’s new coal ash rule under a bill introduced by David McKinley of West Virginia. (The Hill)
• A Senate bill co-sponsored by West Virginia’s Joe Manchin seeks to eliminate protections in the first-ever national coal ash rule. (Earth Justice blog)

COAL: State and federal regulators are pressing U.S. coal companies to prove they can pay for the cost of cleaning up after they are finished mining. (The Market Business)

POLITICS: How “green” is Hillary Clinton? (National Journal)

• A new solar program approved by South Carolina regulators has Duke Energy investing $69 million in the state through its two utilities there. (Charlotte Business Journal)
• A farmer in south-central North Carolina will diversify the use of his land by grazing sheep under the panels of a solar system now under construction. (Greensboro News & Record)

CLEAN POWER PLAN:group of southern state lawmakers has voted unanimously to support a legal challenge to the Clean Power Plan. (Athens Banner-Herald)

POLLUTION: Mercury levels in Atlantic bluefish have been steadily declining — an indication that rules limiting mercury pollution are working, a new study asserts. (ClimateProgress)

• Key senators are fighting a bid to sell oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve in Louisiana to fund highway and other federal programs. (The Hill)
• Energy producers are retreating from searching for oil and natural gas close to Gulf shores as drilling budgets shrink and exploration migrates to land-based shale fields. (Bloomberg)

LOUISIANA: Harmed by years of oil and gas operations, industry and government officials have created an unprecedented plan to save Louisiana’s wetlands. (Public Radio International)

BP SETTLEMENT: Coastal communities in Alabama await rulings before they opt to appropriate their share of the state’s $2 billion settlement. (Alabama Media Group)

GASOLINE: Plentiful supplies of gasoline along the U.S. Atlantic coast are among the factors helping to moderate prices at the pump. (Platts)

CLIMATE: Residents in Huntington, West Virginia have formed the 207th chapter in the U.S. of the Citizens Climate Lobby. (The Herald-Dispatch)

COMMENTARY: North Carolina businessman Jay Faison articulates why he wants fellow Republicans to lead in addressing climate change. (Politico)

Jim Pierobon, a policy, marketing and social media strategist, was a founding contributor to Southeast Energy News. He passed away after a long battle with pancreatic cancer in 2018.

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