GRID: Transmission industry leaders ask a U.S. House committee for help facilitating planning across multiple states and utilities as they seek to decarbonize the electricity sector. (Utility Dive)

ALSO: The Texas House gives preliminary approval to a bill to strengthen the state’s electric grid, require infrastructure upgrades, improve oversight, and add requirements for natural gas facilities. (Austin American-Statesman, Texas Tribune) 

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OIL & GAS:
• Activist investors plan to vote against ExxonMobil’s management in an attempt to force the oil giant to take climate change seriously. (Washington Post)
• North Dakota used $66 million in federal pandemic relief funds to clean up abandoned oil and gas wells in what environmental advocates call a bailout for drilling companies. (Inside Climate News)
• The Interior Department has finalized about three dozen oil and gas leases on federal land sold under former President Trump despite President Biden’s moratorium on new leases. (E&E News, subscription)

PIPELINES:
• A federal judge rules that the Dakota Access pipeline can continue operating during an updated environmental review. (Inforum)
• Attention now turns to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as it completes the court-ordered environmental impact statement. (E&E News, subscription)

SOLAR:
Solar module prices have risen 18% since the start of the year, bucking a nearly decade-long trend of price declines and threatening to delay projects as solar adoption accelerates. (Bloomberg)
A cryptocurrency mining company wants to develop a 1,600 acre solar array south of Butte, Montana, less than a mile from where county officials rejected plans for a storage facility last week. (Montana Standard)

OFFSHORE WIND: Vineyard Wind and a Massachusetts startup incubator back an accelerator program that includes companies developing night-vision cameras and weather-resistant aerial drones to protect marine life near offshore wind farms. (Energy News Network)

COAL:
• The G7 countries pledge to stop funding new overseas coal projects by the end of the year and commit to “rapidly scale up technologies and policies” that accelerate the clean energy transition. (Axios)
• The Sierra Club and West Virginia environmental groups argue in a lawsuit that the state’s coal mining reclamation funding system is broken and needs to be fixed immediately. (Grist)

PUBLIC LANDS: Critics say the Biden administration’s plan to conserve public land will limit the country’s ability to mine lithium, cobalt and other materials critical to clean energy technology. (Deseret News)

INFRASTRUCTURE:
A Republican U.S. senator says his party and President Biden are still far apart on an infrastructure deal, with Biden holding firm on clean energy and climate goals in his counterproposal to the GOP’s plan. (Reuters, The Hill)
A bipartisan group of senators introduce a surface transportation bill to fund highways, roads and bridges as bigger infrastructure talks stall. (The Hill)

COMMENTARY:
• Federal lawmakers ignore the real-life impacts of the Colonial Pipeline’s shutdown and February’s grid-disrupting winter storm by treating an infrastructure bill like a partisan board game, writes a columnist. (Virginia Mercury)
• Governments must take the International Energy Agency’s report outlining a path to net-zero emissions by 2050 seriously and not just rely on behavioral changes to get there, an editorial board writes. (Washington Post)
A National Grid executive writes that “targeted investment” in nationwide transmission infrastructure would create hundreds of thousands of green jobs and help fight the climate crisis. (Energy News Network)