• A new scorecard ranks Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee among the worst states for policies facilitating solar power. (CityLab)
• A Virginia firm wins a nearly $500 million contract to install a solar farm at a Texas army base. (Fort Hood Herald)
• Virginia middle school students petition their school board to pursue solar power. (Inside NoVa)

WIND: A Virginia county unanimously approves a permit for what could be the state’s first commercial wind farm. (Roanoke Times)

CLEAN POWER PLAN: A coalition of environmental and community leaders criticize a Virginia utility’s response to the Clean Power Plan as lawmakers consider a bill that would require legislative approval for any compliance plan. (Capital News Service)

• Robert Murray wants the hearing date for his lawsuit against the EPA postponed so he can attend the GOP convention. (Huffington Post)
• Murray Energy says proposed cuts to West Virginia mining taxes don’t go far enough. (Associated Press)

COAL ASH: A North Carolina school district will spend $475,000 to remediate coal ash at its sports fields. (Wilmington Star-News)

• A bill to establish a regulator framework for fracking moves through the Florida state senate despite opposition from environmentalists. (SaintPetersBlog)
• The Florida League of Cities drops its opposition to a bill prohibiting local drilling bans. (WUSF)
• Commissioners in a Florida county vote to ban fracking. (Sun-Sentinel)

OFFSHORE DRILLING: New protections for right whales off the Georgia and South Carolina coasts could make it more difficult to explore for oil and gas. (The State)

PIPELINES: Virginia lawmakers introduce two pipeline-related bills – one to seek state authority for approval of new natural gas pipelines and another to protect water resources. (Charlottesville Daily Progress)

UTILITES: Duke Energy faces pushback at a public hearing over plans to add a third generating unit to a proposed natural gas plant in western North Carolina. (Carolina Public Press)

WILDLIFE: Federal officials try to figure out how the potential loss of warm water discharges from Florida power plants will impact the recover of manatee populations. (Greenwire)

NUCLEAR: South Carolina’s governor orders the state’s attorney general to sue the Energy Department over delays at a nuclear processing facility. (Associated Press)

CLIMATE: Mayors of 15 Florida cities send a letter to Sen. Marco Rubio urging him to take climate change seriously. (Grist)

• How opponents seek to prohibit wind farm development through regulation. (Southern Alliance for Clean Energy)
• Renewable energy in North Carolina “is a gold mine that deserves strong support” from the legislature. (Fayetteville Observer)

Ken is the director of the Energy News Network at Fresh Energy and is a founding editor of both Midwest Energy News and Southeast Energy News. Prior to joining Fresh Energy, he was the managing editor for online news at Minnesota Public Radio. He started his journalism career in 2002 as a copy editor for the Duluth News Tribune before spending five years at the Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington, where he worked as a copy editor, online producer, features editor and night city editor. A Nebraska native, Ken has a bachelor's degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a master's degree from the University of Oregon. He is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors.

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