Southeast Energy News

South Carolina bill would help customers fight utility rate hikes

NUCLEAR: A South Carolina Senate panel advances legislation to hire a consumer advocate for utility customers and allow the state’s utility watchdog to subpoena documents. (Post & Courier)

EMISSIONS: Seventeen states, including Virginia, sue the EPA over the proposed changes to fuel efficiency standards. (NPR)

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UTILITIES: Dominion Energy Virginia plans to build at least eight natural gas-fired power plants over the next 15 years and add solar capacity as it shifts from coal. (Associated Press)

SOLAR:
• A Virginia car dealership begins installing rooftop solar panels and will be the first in the state to use solar power. (CBS19)
• Independent solar projects are on hold after South Carolina regulators cut rates for SCE&G’s large-scale solar farms. (WLTX)

COAL:
• A Kentucky electric cooperative plans to end a long-term operating agreement for a 312-megawatt coal-fired power plant in May 2019. (Platts)
• Two coal companies — Ramaco Resources and Consol Energy — ramp up production as the industry slows, opening new mines in West Virginia and Virginia and working with large retrofitted coal plants. (Reuters)

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PIPELINES:
• Atlantic Coast Pipeline developers have permission to build four pipeline yards in West Virginia to store equipment; the first 40-acre yard is already built. (Record Delta)
• Lawyers argue in federal court over two Mountain Valley Pipeline protesters sitting in trees to stop construction on their land; the company wants them to be held in contempt of court. (Roanoke Times)

COMMENTARY:
• Lawrence Berkeley National Lab researchers say wind farm developers should engage local communities on projects as turbines get bigger to generate electricity in low-wind places like North Carolina and West Virginia. (The Conversation)
• Outdated net metering policies are harming solar growth in South Carolina and forcing customers to pay more, argues the director of the Harvard Electricity Policy Group. (Post & Courier)

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