ELECTRIC VEHICLES: The race to produce electric vehicles heats up as Mercedes-Benz staffs up at its Alabama auto production and electric battery plants and General Motors announces it will convert more factories to EV production, including a change at its Tennessee plant. (AL.com, Detroit Free Press)

ALSO:
• A Texas-based startup that makes electric off-road vehicles sees shares soar over its initial public offering just weeks after releasing its first commercial vehicle. (Austin American-Statesman)
• Arkansas researchers receive an $18 million grant to fabricate silicon carbide components that are highly sought after for use in electric vehicles. (Arkansas Times-Gazette)

OIL & GAS:
• As a growing number of climate-driven storms drive residents to leave Louisiana, the oil and gas industry rushes to fill the gap, fueling $100 billion worth of capital investment over the past decade, mostly due to liquefied natural gas. (Bloomberg)
• A Texas company’s plans to drill for oil at two sites in Big Cypress National Preserve in the Florida Everglades runs up against a presidential administration that has taken steps to reduce the use of fossil fuels. (WLRN)
• Surging natural gas prices mean rising electric bills in a Florida city where a utility plans to increase customers’ monthly fuel adjustment charge. (Gainesville Sun)

SOLAR:
• A developer plans a 60 MW solar farm in Kentucky but awaits state and local approval that could come this month. (Paducah Sun)
• Duke Energy builds a new solar farm in North Carolina. (WSOC)

RENEWABLES:
• North Carolina’s top administrative law judge rejects the state revenue department’s attempt to deny an insurance company’s $1.8 million tax credit in 2016 for investments in renewable energy. (Carolina Journal)
• A Louisiana community college receives a $1.5 million grant for renewable energy training. (WGMB)

PIPELINES: A Kentucky judge rules against landowners who wanted him to take a closer look at a proposed natural gas pipeline to a Jim Beam bourbon plant. (WDRB)

NUCLEAR: A judge will decide today whether to approve a 2-year prison sentence for the former CEO of a defunct utility who oversaw a doomed $9 billion plan to build two nuclear reactors in South Carolina. (Associated Press)

GRID:
New Orleans council members meet with federal lawmakers in Washington, D.C., to discuss climate change, grid hardening, and Hurricane Ida damages that now exceed $4 billion across Louisiana. (WVUE)
• Appalachian Power announces a grid improvement project in southwestern Virginia. (WXFR)

GEOTHERMAL: Workers at Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport install what will be the largest geothermal heating and cooling system at any airport in the country. (Spectrum News 1)

WIND: Students at Texas Tech University prepare for the Department of Energy’s annual collegiate wind energy competition. (Daily Toreador)

CLIMATE: Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards announces the state is joining a United Nations initiative in its effort to attain net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. (KSHV)

COMMENTARY: The widespread damage created by Hurricane Ida demonstrates the need to harden Louisiana’s electrical grid, writes an electrical engineer. (Hammond Star)

Mason Adams

Mason has worked as a journalist since 2001, covering Appalachian communities and the issues that affect them. He compiles the Southeast Energy News digest. Mason previously worked as a wildlife biologist before moving into journalism by freelancing at Coast Weekly in Monterey, California, before taking an internship in 2001 at High Country News. He wrote for the Enterprise Mountaineer in western North Carolina and the Roanoke Times in western Virginia before going freelance in 2012. His work has appeared in Southerly, Daily Yonder, Mother Jones, Huffington Post, WVPB’s Inside Appalachia and elsewhere. Mason was born and raised in Clifton Forge, Virginia, and now lives with his family and a small herd of goats in Floyd County, Virginia.