Western Energy News

Six new solar-plus-battery projects coming to Hawaii

SOLAR: Hawaii regulators approve contracts for six new utility-scale solar-plus-storage projects on three islands. (Honolulu Star-Advertiser)

CLIMATE:
• A federal judge in Colorado rules that federal land managers once again failed to consider the climate impacts of a drilling project they approved. (E&E News, subscription)
• California spent $1.4 billion last year on programs like electric vehicle and solar incentives with proceeds from its cap-and-trade program. (Grist)

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COAL:
• The Montana Senate passes a bill allowing a South Dakota utility to buy a bigger stake in a struggling coal plant for $1 and pass some of its future costs on to customers. (Associated Press)
• Wyoming lost 153 coal mining jobs last year as demand and production continue to shrink, according to new state figures. (Casper Star Tribune)

UTILITIES:
• Creditors propose a $35 billion plan allowing California’s largest utility to emerge from bankruptcy within a year. (Bloomberg)
• Nevada officials are trying to determine whether a major data center company should be regulated like a utility. (The Nevada Independent)

STORAGE: As battery prices continue to drop, several power providers in Southern California deploy large-scale storage projects. (PV Magazine)

OIL & GAS:
• Oregon’s governor signs a bill banning offshore drilling. (Associated Press)
• Environmentalists seeking to protect an imperiled Western bird ask a federal judge in Idaho to block the Trump administration’s effort to ease restrictions on oil and gas companies. (Associated Press)
• Federal officials leased more than 135,000 acres of public land for oil and gas development, including land in eastern Utah known for its big game. (Salt Lake Tribune)
• New Mexico officials launch an interactive map of methane emissions from the oil and gas industry to help regulators get a better handle on local air quality problems. (Associated Press)
• The oil and gas industry is paying for new commercials and influential lobbyists to try to defeat a plan to overhaul drilling regulations in Colorado. (The Colorado Sun)
• A major oil company postpones plans to sell about 500,000 acres of land in Wyoming. (Reuters)

TRANSPORTATION: Critics of a plan to develop low-carbon fuel standards in Washington say the move would send fuel costs skyrocketing. (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

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NUCLEAR: A U.S. Senate committee backs the Trump administration’s plan to restart the licensing process for the nuclear waste repository at Nevada’s Yucca Mountain. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

COMMENTARY:
• An Arizona congressman says that if it weren’t for Ryan Zinke, he couldn’t think of a worse person to lead the U.S. Interior Department than David Bernhardt. (Arizona Republic)
• A Washington state senator says two clean energy bills under consideration prove that “voters’ feelings about carbon taxes have been ignored.” (The Spokesman-Review)

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