U.S. Energy News

Poll finds support in western states for federal coal-leasing reform

COAL: A new poll finds a majority of residents in western states support reforms to the federal coal-leasing program. (The Hill)

ALSO:
• The U.S. Department of Justice says Alpha Natural Resources’ bankruptcy plan would put significant mine cleanups at risk. (Reuters)
• Pro-coal advocates look to gather momentum as the federal government holds public meetings this week on proposed changes to its coal leasing program. (Grand Junction Daily Sentinel)
• Groups ask the federal government to investigate potential legal and ethical violations over Utah’s financial support for a planned coal export terminal in California. (Deseret News)

NUCLEAR: Critics of Exelon’s push to keep open two uneconomic nuclear plants in Illinois say the plants are not needed for the state to meet Clean Power Plan targets. (EnergyWire)

OIL AND GAS:
• A U.S. agency created after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill plans to unveil tougher financial requirements on offshore drillers as a way to protect taxpayers from costs of cleaning up abandoned rigs. (Reuters)
• Low oil prices are prompting a discussion over whether the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve is needed. (NPR)
• A flaring event and an unrelated crane collapse that injured three workers occurred Monday at an Exxon refinery in California. (Los Angeles Times)
• U.S. Senator John Cornyn of Texas writes in support of a proposed natural gas pipeline and export terminal. (San Antonio Business Journal)

SOLAR:
• The general counsel of the Nevada Public Utilities Commission is removed from her post after making disparaging comments under a Twitter pseudonym about solar policy currently under discussion. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
• San Francisco’s rooftop solar mandate could “work in many more places.” (Greentech Media)

CLEAN TECH: Energy-intensive data centers are leading the way in adopting energy efficiency and renewable energy. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

CLEAN POWER PLAN: A GOP-led congressional panel will question EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy this week over the agency’s use of science in setting carbon rules. (E&E Daily)

BIOFUELS: Maine’s governor issues an executive order calling for a study on the health effects of the emissions from gasoline blended with ethanol. (Portland Press Herald)

COGENERATION: Critics say ComEd is not doing enough to promote its incentive program for combined heat and power systems based on the relatively low number of applicants. (Midwest Energy News)

WIND:
• A buyer emerges for the development rights of Maine’s largest wind project as the original developer, SunEdison, proceeds through bankruptcy. (Bangor Daily News)
• Two major wind development companies plan to merge. (The Oklahoman)

GRID: Researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory continue work on protecting the grid from cyberattacks. (Utility Dive)

CLIMATE: Despite rising sea levels and frequent flooding, developers are marketing storm-resistant and resilient buildings in South Florida. (ClimateWire)

COMMENTARY:
• The coal-mining sector in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah is at risk of disappearing entirely and officials there need to start planning for communities that will be hit the hardest. (Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis)
• The “huge and largely silent toll on children’s health and development” is less prominent in the climate debate. (Environmental Health News)
• For fossil fuel companies, the economic cost of their carbon emissions is more than their after-tax profit. (Vox)

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