Western Energy News

Oil boom complicates New Mexico’s climate aspirations

CLIMATE: New Mexico activists are questioning Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s commitment to reducing the state’s carbon emissions 45% by 2030 given the ongoing Permian Basin oil and gas boom. (Carlsbad Current-Argus)

ALSO: A Republican Utah congressman has started holding climate chats on Twitter, and says he believes common ground can be found on environmental policy. (E&E News)

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HYDROPOWER: Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is supporting Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on the removal of four hydroelectric dams on the Snake River to increase endangered salmon runs. (Associated Press)

CALIFORNIA:
Experts say turning PG&E into a public utility wouldn’t necessarily make power cheaper and safer. (Los Angeles Times)
Some California wildfire victims are critical of the $13.5 billion PG&E bankruptcy settlement and are calling for a better deal. (San Francisco Chronicle)

POLLUTION: Utah lawmakers have come up with 21 legislative proposals in a bid to tackle the state’s pollution problems. (Deseret News)

OIL & GAS: An Oregon landfill accepted two million pounds of radioactive fracking waste from North Dakota in 2016, 2017, and 2019 in violation of state regulations. (Oregonian)

COAL: Montana lawmakers and consumers are calling for more details on NorthWestern Energy’s plan to buy more of the Colstrip Power Plant. (Billings Gazette)

CLEAN ENERGY: New Mexico bills that would expand power line infrastructure and reinstate a solar tax credit that expired in 2016 passed the state senate’s finance committee. (New Mexico Political Report)

SOLAR: A report suggests California homebuilders tried to avoid the state’s new requirement that all new homes be solar-powered by rushing to take out new building permits towards the end of 2019. (East Bay Times)

UTILITIES:
Arizona Public Service has partnered with a national clean energy business group to get help with reaching the utility’s goal of 100% clean energy by 2050. (Utility Dive)
Pacific Power has asked Oregon energy regulators for a 2021 rate increase, but says renewable energy sources cut the potential rise considerably. (KTVZ)
• A Pueblo, Colorado advocacy group filed a lawsuit questioning the transparency of a ballot question regarding the public takeover of Black Hills Energy. (KOAA)

OVERSIGHT: A proposal aiming to streamline New Mexico’s Public Regulation Commission and make it more efficient passed the House floor last night. (New Mexico Political Report)

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WASTE-TO-ENERGY: A bill aiming to designate the electricity produced by Marion County, Oregon’s garbage incinerator as a form of renewable energy has stalled in the state legislature. (Statesman Journal)

COMMENTARY:
David Roberts says renewable natural gas is worth pursuing, but not as an alternative to electrification. (Vox)
Gov. Jared Polis says a state-level cap-and-trade policy would be “unworkable” in Colorado. (Pueblo Chieftain)
Former governor of Colorado Bill Ritter and Tri-State’s CEO say the electricity cooperative’s Responsible Energy Plan is a bold step in transitioning to a new energy economy. (Denver Post)
Huron, California’s mayor says renewable energy projects can improve the San Joaquin Valley’s environment and economy. (Fresno Bee)

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