COAL ASH: Memphis, Light, Gas & Water said Thursday that tests conducted by an independent lab on water wells near one of its coal plants came up below detected limits for toxins. (Associated Press)

• Citing environmental concerns, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper announced his opposition to offshore drilling in the Atlantic. (Blue Ridge Public Radio)
• Republicans will likely be divided over the government’s role in a $3.8 billion Lake Charles, Louisiana, project that would take waste from oil refining and turn it into synthetic natural gas while capturing emissions. (Bloomberg)
• A new study by Louisiana State shows crude oil from the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill is buried in wetland soil and is almost as toxic as the day of the disaster. (Times-Picayune)

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COAL: In the second of a two-part series, a state regulator says he is “continually mystified” that Mississippi Power’s “clean coal” Kemper plant was allowed to become three years behind schedule and more than $4.5 billion over budget. (SNL Energy)

NUCLEAR: South Carolina Electric & Gas filed a motion Thursday to throw out a complaint filed by environmental groups to stop construction on the Summer nuclear plant, saying those efforts are “premature.” (Post and Courier)

• FERC is expected to release its final environmental impact statement today for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline project. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
• The DEQ held on Thursday its final public hearing on the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline, with many opponents of the project in attendance. (ABC 11)

• Dominion Energy will build a 120-acre solar farm to provide power for the University of Virginia, likely by late 2018. (Daily Progress)
• Although the founder of Scenic Hill Solar says he’s “not 100 percent sold that climate change is human caused,” he touted the benefits of building a solar farm in Arkansas that is expected to begin operations next year. (KUAR)

DEMAND: The Tennessee Valley Authority says power demand related to increased use of electricity to cool homes is expected to be at its peak, which would be the highest since a heat wave in 2012. (Decatur Daily)

• The secretary of West Virginia’s Department of Environmental Protection says a federal review to ensure he has no financial ties to coal mines is “both troubling and offensive.” (Charleston Gazette-Mail)
• EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt visited Arkansas on Thursday as part of national “state action tour.” (Arkansas News)

CLIMATE: One of Florida’s Democratic gubernatorial candidates says climate change is the biggest threat to the state’s economy. (Tampa Bay Times)

COMMENTARY: A state policy expert at the nonprofit organization Ceres says North Carolina lawmakers have an opportunity to drive new investment through renewable energy options that businesses are seeking out. (Southeast Energy News)