U.S. Energy News

Report finds urban solar boom moving inland

SOLAR: Solar capacity is gaining in urban areas as the number of U.S. cities with more than 50 MW installed climbs to 23, according to a new report. (Greentech Media)

ALSO:
Michigan looks to remove barriers to solar projects on agricultural land as a way to boost revenue for farmers and meet climate goals. (Energy News Network)
• The number of proposed large-scale solar projects suggests a “boom is coming to the Midwest.” (PV Magazine)
• Small solar companies in Iowa fear legislation to add monthly fees for solar customers could kill the state’s nascent industry. (InsideClimate News)

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RENEWABLES: Some environmental groups want Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan to veto a bill increasing the state’s renewable energy standard because it includes subsidies for carbon-emitting waste-to-energy projects. (Baltimore Sun)

WIND:
• U.S. wind energy providers increased capacity by 8% last year, with Texas leading the nation, according to an industry group report. (Houston Public Media)
Offshore wind proponents say more federal policy certainty and coordination between states is needed for the industry to grow. (WorkBoat)

AVIATION:
• Electrifying aviation is “one of the hottest topics” in aircraft engineering as several companies announce progress toward fully electric flight. (Vox)
• A study finds that “flying cars” could emit fewer greenhouse gases than ground vehicles, but it depends on distances and how many people are riding. (Earther)

MICROGRIDS: Alabama Power’s smart neighborhood microgrid could serve as a model for other microgrids in the U.S. (Greentech Media)

TRANSMISSION:
Maine regulators are set to vote Thursday on the New England Clean Energy Connect project that would carry Canadian hydropower to Massachusetts. (Press Herald)
New York’s grid operator chose two transmission projects to relieve system congestion that it says adds the greatest amount of capacity in 30 years. (RTO Insider)

COAL:
• A film about coal mine entrapment inspired by real-life tragedies debuts Friday in several Appalachian states before a wider national release. (Associated Press)
• Appalachian coal community residents tell a Congressional subcommittee that mountaintop removal mining should be stopped until its health effects are better studied. (Ohio Valley Resource)

NUCLEAR:
Congressional proponents of a plan to store the nation’s nuclear waste at Nevada’s Yucca Mountain seek to double the funding amount proposed to restart licensing. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Minnesota officials say new nuclear plants aren’t the most cost effective way to meet the state’s ambitious carbon-free energy goals. (Associated Press)

OIL & GAS:
• A group of renegade nuns that took on a planned natural gas pipeline in Pennsylvania see protecting the earth as part of their religious duty. (New Yorker)
Federal lawmakers introduce bills to extend tax credits for biofuels and tighten regulations on oil and gas pipelines. (E&E News, subscription)
• Natural gas prices have been negative for almost two weeks, largely because of a lack of pipeline space in Texas. (Reuters)

OFFSHORE DRILLING: Republicans warn that the Trump administration’s push to expand offshore drilling off the coast of Florida could cost him votes there. (Politico)

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CLIMATE: Former Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel tells a U.S. House committee that climate change is a threat to national security. (Omaha World-Herald)

COMMENTARY:
• The savings created by energy efficiency programs are crucial for low-income households in multifamily buildings, a research analyst writes. (ACEEE Blog)
A wind industry group says strong demand, low costs and new technology are “propelling wind to new heights.” (American Wind Energy Association)

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