Western Energy News

Report: PG&E failed to clear trees before wildfires

UTILITIES:
• Pacific Gas & Electric, blamed for some of California’s most devastating recent wildfires, failed to clear thousands of trees that posed a threat to power lines, according to a report submitted to a federal judge (Associated Press)
• Nevada regulators will allow a planned liquid hydrogen facility to opt out of service from utility NV Energy without paying an impact fee. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

RENEWABLES:
• California’s grid led the country with the most renewable energy output during the first half of 2019, producing 3% less than the previous year. (S&P Global)
• California’s Clean Energy Commission awards $3.75 million to support 25 early-stage clean energy projects. (news release)

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WIND: An Oregon-based utility plans to replace 68 turbines at a Wyoming wind farm with 13 larger, more efficient turbines that will produce that same 41 MW of power. (Associated Press)

SOLAR: Croplands, grasslands and wetlands offer the best conditions for solar generation, according to a new study by Oregon State University researchers. (Portland Business Journal, subscription)

HYDRO: Students and environmental activists petition the government to remove four dams along the Lower Snake River in Eastern Washington, saying it would boost the salmon population and help local orcas that feed on them. (KOMO News)

WASTE-TO-ENERGY: Experts say high prices for California’s low-carbon fuel standard credits should spur investment in biogas production in the state. (Los Angeles Times)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: California’s community choice aggregators launch a program to invest in the state’s growing EV charging infrastructure, starting with thousands of chargers in San Mateo County. (Greentech Media)

OIL & GAS:
• A federal agency approves a permit for developers to search for oil and gas in Alaska’s lower Cook Inlet. (KTVA)
• Activists work to reinstate a local fracking ban in Longmont, Colorado, but an oil and gas industry group says the move would be illegal under state law. (Colorado Politics, Associated Press)
• The head of Wyoming’s Sage Grouse Implementation Team says only 6% of the state’s new oil and gas wells are in core greater sage grouse habitat, compared to 7.8% under Obama-era regulations. (WyoFile)
• A judge bars the Trump administration from following the recommendations of an energy advisory panel that formed to help remove barriers to drilling and mining on public lands. (Associated Press)

NUCLEAR: The Department of Energy launches a National Reactor Innovation Center in Idaho that will assist with the development of advanced nuclear energy technologies. (KIFI/KIDK)

CLIMATE: Commissioners in Boulder County, Colorado, vote to support climate action policies developed by a statewide coalition, which include aggressive carbon pollution targets and tracking greenhouse gas emissions. (Patch)

***SPONSORED LINK: Attend Infocast’s Mountain West Renewables Summit, October 22-24 in Scottsdale, Arizona and get ready to discover the vast renewable energy opportunities alongside policymakers, regulators, utilities, corporate energy buyers and cities driving this renewables buildout. Register today, and we’ll see you in Arizona!***

EMISSIONS: Seattle passes a non-binding resolution to form a plan to cut its greenhouse gas emissions. (InsideClimate News)

COMMENTARY: Adopting zero emission vehicle standards in Colorado would benefit the environment, economy and public health, says a Frisco Town Council member. (Summit Daily)

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