Western Energy News

Public gets more time to comment on plans to drill sage grouse habitat

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OIL AND GAS: A federal judge in Montana rules that the BLM can’t restrict public comments on a plan to allow drilling on sage grouse habitat; the ruling casts doubt on a controversial lease sale scheduled for December in Colorado. (Associated Press, Grand Junction Daily-Sentinel)

ALSO: Refineries in New Mexico and Texas are reaping economic benefits from surging oil and gas production in the Permian Basin. (San Antonio Express-News)

***SPONSORED LINK: Secure your spot for the EVs & the Grid Workshop, October 10-12 in West Hollywood, California. See the showcase of all public and private programs and initiatives that are enabling electrification. Government, utilities, and environmental advocates will guide property developers and fleet owners.***

RENEWABLES: A California city pledges to get all of its energy from renewable sources by 2035, a decade before the deadline set by the state. (The Tribune)

• During a visit to a national park in Utah, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke scoffs at the the notion that he’s giving away public lands to oil and gas companies. (Associated Press)
• A federal judge in Washington D.C. refuses the Trump administration’s request that three lawsuits challenging the decision to shrink two national monuments in Utah be moved to a court there, a win for the environmental groups that sued the government. (The Hill)

TRANSPORTATION: The Trump administration opens a series of meetings about its plan to roll back fuel efficiency standards in California’s Central Valley. (Bloomberg)

PIPELINES: The developer of the Keystone XL pipeline plans to start construction next year after the U.S. State Department review found that spills were unlikely. (Associated Press)

SUSTAINABILITY: With its $1.8 million monthly electricity bill, critics say the University of Washington is lagging behind other colleges in sustainability efforts. (The Seattle Times)

• Supporters of a Nevada energy choice initiative say the state’s largest utility will likely spend millions of dollars to defeat a clean energy initiative should voters reject their ballot measure. (Reno Gazette-Journal)
• Colorado’s former governor talks about making the leap from politics to a venture capital firm where he continues to work on energy issues. (Forbes)
• Republicans push back on states they consider as “pro-regulation” — such as Washington, where the construction of a coal terminal was blocked due to pollution concerns. (Roll Call)

COAL: In the heart of Wyoming’s coal country, local businesses adapt to become less reliant on the volatile industry. (Sheridan Press)

SOLAR: A 25-panel solar array is installed at a Wyoming health clinic, a move expected offset about 98 percent of the facility’s energy costs. (Laramie Boomerang)

***SPONSORED LINK: Join us at Grid Modernization 2018, October 23-24 in Denver. The Summit will bring together regulators, utility leaders and key technology innovators to explore how to optimize grid investment, meet growing customer demands and operational needs.***

• California regulators awarded a $5 million grant to researchers trying to test a renewable energy microgrid at a naval facility. (Microgrid Knowledge)
• New Mexico researchers receive a $20 million grant to study grid modernization. (Albuquerque Journal)

COMMENTARY: A new book argues that public lands have more economic value if they’re left alone. (The New Republic)


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