U.S. Energy News

Project proves electric vehicles can be reliable grid assets

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Electric vehicles can serve as reliable and flexible grid assets, according to the results of a pilot program conducted by BMW and a California utility. (Greentech Media)

ALSO:
• Ann Arbor, Michigan is developing a plan to purchase electric vehicles for its city-owned fleet and charge them with solar energy. (MLive)
• Tesla says it is “actively talking” with other auto manufacturers about opening up the company’s Supercharger network to other cars. (BGR News)

GRID: Energy Secretary Rick Perry emphasizes electric grid reliability during his testimony before a House subcommittee, and says the Energy Department’s controversial grid study will be available at the end of the June. (ThinkProgress)

SOLAR:
• An analysis looks at what caused California’s first quarter solar downturn and what it could mean for the rest of the country. (Greentech Media)
• Georgia-based Green Power EMC and Silicon Ranch Corp. will partner to build four solar projects, which will power more than 35,000 households annually in South Georgia. (Atlanta Business Chronicle)

WIND: Texas’s thriving wind industry is threatening natural gas plants in the state. (Bloomberg)

RENEWABLES: Major U.S. corporations are some of the country’s biggest buyers of renewable energy, according to numbers from the American Wind Energy Association and GTM Research. (Reuters)

BIODIESEL: Advocates from across the country ask Congress to bring back the biodiesel tax incentive. (Biodiesel Magazine)

TECHNOLOGY: A genetically modified fatty algae could be used as a future fuel crop, according to new research. (Wired)

UTILITIES:
• A statewide budget bill advancing in Ohio includes an amendment that critics say is another attempt at a “bailout” for the state’s utilities, and another that would ease wind turbine setbacks. (Midwest Energy News)
• California’s Public Utilities Commission rules that small utilities can allow customers with multiple meters to unify their readings for purposes of net metering payments. (PV Magazine)
• Washington state’s largest energy utility will pay at least $1.5 million for its role in a 2016 natural gas explosion in Seattle that injured nine firefighters and damaged dozens of businesses. (Associated Press)
• An effort is underway in a small Iowa city to create its own municipal utility, in part so the area can have more control over its access to renewable energy. (Midwest Energy News)

REGULATION: Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke says the Trump administration will enforce a regulation that limits methane emissions from oil and gas operations, even as it works to rewrite the rule. (Associated Press)

EPA:
• The EPA tells dozens of scientists that their jobs will not be renewed, leaving the agency’s scientific advisory board “free for a complete reappointment.” (Washington Post)
• The EPA plans to get rid of at least 1,200 employees this summer through buyouts and early retirements. (Washington Post)

OIL & GAS:
• Oil traders in the U.S. Gulf are preparing for supply disruptions as a developing tropical storm threatens to hit refining and production centers this week. (Reuters)
• Exxon and other companies could waste up to half of their budgets on oil fields that won’t be needed if Paris climate targets are to be met, according to a new report. (Reuters)
• A state senator asks Alaska’s Supreme Court to reverse a decision that reduces the size of annual checks that residents receive for their share of Alaska’s oil wealth. (Associated Press)

NUCLEAR:
• U.S. House lawmakers approved legislation on Tuesday that removes a tax credit deadline and could save hundreds of millions of dollars for the struggling Vogtle and Summer nuclear projects. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
• Activists say a small modular nuclear reactor planned for Idaho will be different from other troubled U.S. nuclear projects. (Washington Post)

COMMENTARY:
• Oil giants are backing a Republican-led carbon tax plan, but it could be because they know the plan is unlikely to pass, says a writer for the Huffington Post.
• Scientists should stop debating about whether the U.S. grid can be powered by 100 percent renewables and “brainstorm this problem” instead, says the founding editor of Climate Progress. (ThinkProgress)

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