Western Energy News

Treasury seeks to block banks from divesting of Arctic oil and gas

OIL & GAS: The Treasury Department proposes a rule that would limit large banks from pulling their financing from Arctic oil and gas projects after several banks announced policies prohibiting such investments. (Anchorage Daily News)

PUBLIC LANDS: The New Mexico congresswoman reportedly being considered for Interior Secretary under President-elect Joe Biden says leasing practices for federal lands need to change to encourage more clean energy. (S&P Global)

EQUITY: A first-of-its-kind clean energy fund created by Portland, Oregon, voters prioritizes grants to people of color and those with low income to offset “centuries of underinvestment” in those communities. (NPR)

COAL: Colorado air quality regulators move to order three coal-fired power plants to close by the end of 2028, sooner than their owners have said they would voluntarily retire them. (Colorado Sun)

POLICY: After four years of attacks by President Trump, Californians expect to play an influential role in shaping policy under President-elect Biden, including on climate and equity issues. (Bloomberg Law)

SOLAR:
• Hawaiian Electric proposes two solar projects totaling up to 20 MW as part of a push to increase renewable energy in the state. (Honolulu Star-Advertiser)
• Sunrun will aggregate home solar-plus-storage systems into a 5 megawatt virtual power plant for Southern California Edison. (PV Tech)
• California certifies a drone-based 3D modelling platform that may help enforce the state’s requirements for solar on new homes. (Renewable Energy Magazine)

UTILITIES:
Investigators find that a downed PG&E power line sparked Santa Barbara County’s Drum Fire in June, but the utility says it is conducting its own investigation. (Santa Maria Times)
Consumer advocates want a $166 million penalty levied against PG&E for failing to inform almost 400,000 ratepayers of three of the utility’s planned blackouts in 2019. (KPIX)

TRANSPORTATION:
California opens the application period for a $44.1 million clean transportation and infrastructure initiative. (Green Car Congress)
• A Tucson, Arizona, transit service deploys 15 new buses powered by compressed natural gas that it says will reduce emissions. (Arizona Daily Star)
A new program offers California residents up to $1,500 off the purchase price of an electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid. (Silicon Valley Business Journal)

COMMENTARY:
• An editorial board says New Mexico U.S. Rep. Deb Haaland’s strong qualifications and experience would make her invaluable as the first Native American Cabinet member in U.S. history. (Las Vegas Sun)
How politically conservative, coal-dependent Utah achieved a commitment to 100% net-renewable electricity by 2030, according to three experts. (GreenBiz)

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