CLIMATE: In its first year, the Biden administration has signed off on clean energy projects and made pledges and rules to address climate change, but so far has failed to pass a major climate investment as his Build Back Better bill remains stalled. (E&E News)

COAL:
• The U.S. EPA orders utilities to stop dumping coal ash waste into unlined storage ponds and to speed up plans to close leaking sites, jeopardizing the future of dozens of coal plants and ash storage sites nationwide. (Associated Press, Inside Climate News)
• Coal-fired plants are expected to make up 85% of power capacity retired in the U.S. this year. (Reuters)
New Mexico community organizers work to ensure the transition from coal mining and power generation is just and equitable for affected workers and communities. (High Country News)

POLITICS:
• Senate Democrats are using a report showing last year was the fourth warmest on record to push their Build Back Better package, or at least a portion of it devoted to climate change. (E&E News)
• U.S. Sen. Tina Smith of Minnesota remains bullish on adopting stronger climate and clean energy programs either through the Build Back Better proposal or her own Clean Electricity Performance Program. (E&E News)

EFFICIENCY: New York City’s deadliest fire in decades was caused by a malfunctioning space heater in a building with poor heating efficiency and insulation, which advocates say highlights how energy efficiency concerns aren’t just a climate issue. (Gizmodo)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: A planned mine in Minnesota and a proposed investment in Californian lithium extraction are among a wave of plans from governments, automakers and battery companies to secure more electric vehicle battery components. (Axios)

CARBON CAPTURE:
The U.S. invested $3.5 billion in carbon capture last year, but the industry has to drastically reduce operating costs if it hopes to survive. (Bloomberg)
Federal regulators approve a plan to capture carbon during natural gas processing and inject it into aging Permian Basin oil wells to stimulate production. (Natural Gas Intelligence) 

WIND:
• A 999 MW wind farm — the nation’s largest — nears completion in Oklahoma and is expected to begin operations in April. (KGOU)
• The U.S. Interior Department advances reviews of proposed offshore wind farms in the Gulf of Mexico and upper Pacific Ocean. (E&E News)

SOLAR:
California Gov. Gavin Newsom says a controversial proposal to overhaul the state’s net metering policies for rooftop solar will be revised before it is finalized. (San Diego Union-Tribune)
Soon-to-be-published research shows New Yorkers are more likely to support rooftop and community solar projects than utility-scale farms, suggesting potential facilities could be reconfigured for greater public acceptance. (News 10)

COMMENTARY:
• Utilities’ continued buildout of natural gas plants ignores the fact that the industry will only become less profitable in the coming years and fails to address climate change, an energy policy expert writes. (Utility Dive)
• Senate Democrats’ failure to pass a substantial climate bill a year into the Biden administration threatens to undermine the U.S.’s climate credibility, and it’s not just Sen. Joe Manchin’s who’s to blame, a climate columnist writes. (The Atlantic)

Questions or comments about this article? Contact us at editor@energynews.us.

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Kathryn Krawczyk

Kathryn brings her extensive editorial background to the Energy News Network team, where she oversees the early-morning production of ENN’s five email digest newsletters as well as distribution of ENN’s original journalism with other media outlets. From documenting chronic illness’ effect on college students to following the inner workings of Congress, Kathryn has built a broad experience in her more than five years working at major publications including The Week Magazine. Kathryn holds a Bachelor of Science in magazine journalism and information management and technology from Syracuse University.