Western Energy News

Oregon Democrats declare climate bill dead

POLITICS: The president of the Oregon Senate says the climate bill that triggered a Republican walkout does not have enough votes from Democrats to pass. (The Oregonian)

UTILITIES:
• Major bondholders for PG&E have filed a plan in bankruptcy court proposing to set aside up to $18 billion to settle wildfire damage claims and rename the troubled utility. (Sacramento Bee)
• Nevada’s largest utility makes a big commitment to solar plus storage after many of its large customers demand more clean energy. (Utility Dive)
• The city of Fresno, California considers joining a government-run energy program. (The Business Journal)

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WIND: A developer is proposing to build a 247 MW wind farm in southeastern New Mexico. (Carlsbad Current Argus)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger stars in a new commercial aimed at promoting electric vehicles. (Wired)

OIL & GAS:
• The U.S. House of Representatives has approved a spending measure prohibiting land managers from using federal funds to approve oil and gas projects near an area in New Mexico considered sacred by several Western tribes. (Associated Press)
• The royalty rate used by federal land managers shortchanges New Mexico and other oil and gas rich states, according to a new report by a national taxpayers’ advocacy group. (Albuquerque Journal)
• Federal energy regulators are expected to issue a draft environmental review of a $43 billion gasline project proposed for Alaska this week. (Alaska Journal of Commerce)

SOLAR:
• The board of supervisors in Riverside County, California have voted to repeal a year-old net metering ordinance. (Palm Springs Desert Sun)
• A Seattle-based software startup offering home solar performance guarantees raises $15 million in investment funding as it seeks to expand into the commercial solar market. (Greentech Media)

COAL: As Wyoming’s congressional delegation cheers the Trump administration’s replacement for the Clean Power Plan, mining data shows how the state’s coal industry has been declining even without the Obama-era rule ever going into effect. (WyoFile)

PUBLIC LANDS: Federal land managers release a draft resource management plan for eastern Colorado that reaffirms the Bureau of Land Management’s commitment to drilling and mining on public lands. (Westword)

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GEOTHERMAL: A Hawaii geothermal plant forced to close by a volcanic eruption should reopen by the end of the year, company officials say. (Pacific Business News)

COMMENTARY:
• The decision by Oregon’s Senate president not to put a climate bill up for a vote is a “a serious setback” for the state, says two economics professors at Portland State University. (The Oregonian)
• A contributing editor for High Country News says former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke “had one sensible proposal” that could soon be realized: moving BLM’s headquarters from Washington D.C. out West. (River of Lost Souls)

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