U.S. Energy News

Opponents target pipelines with new lawsuit, rally

PIPELINES: Citizen groups file a lawsuit with the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals challenging a federal permit that undergirds all other permits for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. (Energy News Network)

ALSO:
Two dozen groups are expected to rally in Richmond, Virginia to raise awareness about issues surrounding the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast Pipelines. (Daily Press)
If Congress passes a bill to weaken the Clean Water Act, it could deal a blow to pipeline opponents in New Jersey and New York. (NJ Spotlight, S&P Global)

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POWER PLANTS:
• Environmental groups and Indiana’s coal industry align in opposition to Vectren’s plan to build a $900 million natural gas plant. (E&E News)
• The fate of a pair of 1950s-era coal plants and the largest solar project ever proposed in Ohio are entangled in a case before the state’s Supreme Court. (Energy News Network)

SOLAR:
The fight for cheap solar power is playing out in Southeastern states where some utilities impose fees and states lack renewable-friendly policies. (Grist)
Xcel Energy reaches a 22-year power purchase agreement with a Colorado steel mill that includes plans for a 240 MW solar farm. (Pueblo Chieftain)
Maine’s highest court dismisses a challenge to a new rule that reduces solar net-metering rates over time, dealing a blow to solar advocates. (Portland Press Herald)

WIND: Fishermen have been largely unaffected by Rhode Island’s Block Island Wind Farm, but there are concerns that larger wind farms could harm offshore ecosystems. (Providence Journal)

RENEWABLES:
• A small northern Michigan utility is the first in the state to announce a 100 percent renewable energy goal as coal plant closures by major utilities forces smaller companies to seek other options. (Energy News Network)
• An Indiana researcher says non-mandated goals are not effective in driving renewable energy, except where the resource is price-competitive, like wind in the Great Plains. (Utility Dive)
Massachusetts is among a handful of states experimenting with new policies to achieve the same goals as renewable portfolio standards. (Utility Dive)

COAL: An annual coal production report from West Virginia University says the state’s recent uptick in coal production will be short-lived and that it will decline over the next two decades. (WVPB)

OIL AND GAS: An FBI agent says Louisiana is a “major cyber vulnerability area” because its network of pipelines and oil and gas infrastructure is vital to the energy industry. (Associated Press)

HYDROELECTRIC: Minnesota regulators pull $3.5 million in funding for a long-planned hydroelectric project along the Minneapolis riverfront, saying it is no longer in the public interest. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

MICROGRIDS: The island of Ocracoke on the Outer Banks in North Carolina is using cheap solar panels and batteries to power its microgrid. (WUNC)

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TRANSPORTATION: Undeterred by the Trump administration’s plan to freeze fuel efficiency standards, Colorado air quality officials launch a push to accelerate the state’s shift toward zero-emission vehicles. (Denver Post)

POLITICS: At a stop to drum up support for Washington’s proposed carbon fee, Governor Jay Inslee said Interior Ryan Secretary Ryan Zinke “would sell his grandchildren for the oil industry.” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

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