Western Energy News

Solar projects in Oregon and Utah to power Facebook’s data centers

SOLAR: Facebook and a Portland-based utility are teaming up to build six solar projects in Oregon and Utah to power the social media company’s data centers. (Salt Lake Tribune)

ALSO: A Washington siting board approves a sprawling 25 MW solar farm, which opponents say should not be built atop farmland. (The Spokesman-Review)

***SPONSORED LINK: Check out More Power To You, an independent podcast about the policy and politics shaping our clean energy economy. Listen for free, on Apple Podcasts or on your app of choice.***

GRID: The expansion of California’s grid would create up to 20,000 new renewable energy jobs by 2030 and lower energy costs, according to a new report from a local non-partisan think tank. (Orange County Register)

• Colorado’s governor directs state oil and gas regulators to plug and clean up hundreds of the state’s “orphan” wells by 2023. (Denver Post)
•  Officials with California’s oil and gas industry worry a recent decision by a city to impose restrictions on new wells will have a chilling effect on the rest of the state. (Bakersfield Californian)
• A former rodeo clown and energy consultant has kicked off an effort to repurpose water used for oil and gas operations in Wyoming. (Wyoming Tribune Eagle)
• Officials with a company planning to build a gas processing plant in northern Colorado say they’ll relocate the project to an industrial site after rural landowners raised concerns. (Greeley Tribune)

• A 2013 ruling by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh greenlighting the Yucca Mountain project puts a Nevada senator running for re-election in a difficult position: support President Trump’s pick and face the wrath of Nevada voters opposed to the nuclear waste storage plan. (Nevada Independent)
• A recent Congressional tour of the Yucca Mountain site has spurred Las Vegas business leaders to travel to Washington D.C. to try to sway lawmakers to oppose the project. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)

RENEWABLES: Arizona has made significant strides in clean energy production since 2008, especially with battery storage and electric vehicles, according to a report from environmentalists. (Cronkite News)

HYDROPOWER: The U.S. Senate advances a bill extending the deadline to begin construction on a hydroelectric project in Montana. (Daily Energy Insider)

***SPONSORED LINK: Registration is now open for the TransGrid-X 2030 Symposium on July 26, in Ames, Iowa. The event will showcase the long-awaited NREL Seam Study—a concept featuring bi-directional high-voltage transmission; 600 GW of wind, solar and gas-fired generation; and a trillion-dollar economic event if fully built. ***

UTILITIES: A coalition pushing for a southern Colorado city to establish its own municipal utility will hold a series of meetings this summer to discuss the idea. (Colorado Springs Independent)

• Denver’s recent clean energy pledge should be applauded but it’s important to provide support to fossil fuel industry workers as the city makes the transition, says a local union leader. (Denver Post)
• Whether you want clean energy or not, Arizona residents — not the state’s largest utility — should have a say about the state’s energy mix, says a local columnist. (Arizona Republic)
• Expanding California’s grid will increase the state’s energy security, says the head of the state chamber of commerce. (San Diego Union-Tribune)
• Don’t believe a recent report funded by the Montana Chamber of Commerce Foundation that paints a “misleading, doomsday” picture of the state’s economy should a coal plant be retired, says a former state utility regulator. (Missoulian)

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