U.S. Energy News

Shell U.S. may drop ‘oil’ from name in sign of times

TRANSITION:
The U.S. unit of Shell may soon drop the word “oil” from its name in a move that would symbolize its transition to other sources of energy, an executive said. (Bloomberg)
The millennial generation is arriving with little money but a desire to collaborate on energy innovation, spawning a growing number of collaboration hubs. (EnergyWire)

SOLAR: Solar energy developers could earn $100 billion or more selling equipment to the oil industry for extracting heavy grades of crude, says the head of the company developing the world’s largest solar heat plant. (Bloomberg)

ALSO:
Community solar is set to take off this year and will represent a large market share of the industry by 2020, according to GTM Research. (ThinkProgress)
• Warren Buffett’s Nevada utility has lined up what may be the cheapest electricity in the U.S., and it’s from a solar farm. (Bloomberg)
• Future deployment of distributed solar is highly sensitive to retail electricity rate design, according to a new report from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. (Science Daily)

CRUDE EXPORTS: Democrats at a House Energy and Power Subcommittee hearing Thursday argued that lifting the U.S. ban on crude oil exports would benefit China at the expense of domestic refineries. (FuelFix)

COAL: A Minnesota utility announced Thursday it will close two coal-fired generators at a plant on Lake Superior as part of a plan to substantially reduce its reliance on coal. (Midwest Energy News)

FEDERAL BUDGET: Green groups celebrated House Republicans’ decision to pull a spending bill for the Departments of Interior and Environment Thursday amid a raucous debate over the Confederate flag. (The Hill)

PRESIDENTIAL RACE:
Three of the candidates in the 2016 presidential race, all Democrats, have pledged to shun campaign contributions from the fossil fuel industry. (The Huffington Post)
Some Republican governors who are running for president are threatening to ignore EPA regulations like the Clean Power Plan, but others see peril in doing so. (The Washington Post)

NATURAL GAS: Chicago-based Exelon Corp. began construction this week on major power plant expansions near Houston and Fort Worth that rely on cheap natural gas and much less water consumption. (FuelFix)

POLL: A large majority of people who have heard of California’s Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan support it, but most haven’t heard of it, according to a new Pew poll. (Desert Sun)

GREENHOUSE EFFECT: Scientists have devised a new way to measure with a high level of accuracy how atmospheric carbon dioxide builds up, migrates, evolves and absorbs heat. (Climate News Network)

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