U.S. Energy News

Trump administration seeks end-run around West Coast coal export bans

COAL: U.S. Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette wants to work with Canada and Mexico to export U.S. coal to Asia and get around West Coast states that have blocked permits for coal shipments due to climate concerns. (Reuters)

ALSO:
• Brouillette also announces a $64 million initiative to fund research and development to make coal “a near-zero emissions energy source.” (The Hill)
Coal ash from Puerto Rico is making its way to Florida and Georgia after its government passed a law prohibiting disposal on the island. (WDEF)

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GRID:
As Puerto Rico recovers from Hurricane Maria, earthquakes damage power plants, revealing the risks of its centralized electricity structure. (The Intercept)
• Several solar and storage projects were unable to participate in a New England capacity auction after confusion about a filing deadline. (Utility Dive)

CLIMATE:
• Sprawling wildfires last year triggered the global release of billions of tons of greenhouse gases, alarming climate scientists. (Bloomberg)
• A public hearing on Oregon’s cap-and-trade bill draws a large and sharply divided crowd, with at least 150 people signed up to testify. (Associated Press)
• New Jersey business groups raise questions about the potential impact of new regulations under the state’s climate plan. (NJ Spotlight)
• The Chicago City Council considers declaring a climate emergency that includes goals for net zero carbon emissions. (CBS Chicago)

EMISSIONS: A Texas energy company is working on a project to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it underground. (E&E News)

OIL & GAS:
• ExxonMobil tells its shareholders in an annual report that growing climate instability does not rule out continued production of fossil fuels. (Drilled News)
Corporate energy lobbyists and Louisiana lawmakers have pioneered ways to discourage environmental protests by criminalizing trespassing on “critical” oil and gas infrastructure. (ProPublica, Times-Picayune | New Orleans Advocate)
Texas drillers bank on China to increase demand for U.S. oil and gas, but China is developing its own energy sector focused on solar and electric cars. (Houston Chronicle)

PIPELINES:
• Tribes and other pipeline activists gear up for another fight as the Trump administration seeks to revive the Keystone XL pipeline. (Mother Jones)
Appalachian Trail advocates and Atlantic Coast Pipeline developers are at odds in a case over the pipeline’s permit that is going before the Supreme Court this month. (Bloomberg)
An exploration of the 15-year battle over a proposed 229-mile natural gas pipeline and processing terminal in Oregon finds a divided community. (PBS NewsHour) 

TRANSPORTATION:
Corporate and municipal fleets are increasingly switching to electric vehicles, with EVs projected to make up 12% of fleet vehicles by 2030. (NPR)
The Department of Justice quietly ends its antitrust probe into four automakers that sided with California on emissions rules. (New York Times)
A Florida company wants to build a solar-powered, on-demand, rapid public transit system in the state. (Orlando Weekly)

ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE: Top priorities for Michigan’s first advisory council on environmental justice include fossil fuel pollution in southwest Detroit and a lack of access to clean energy programs. (Energy News Network)

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FINANCE: Warming winters have been a disaster for global energy markets, which rely on cold weather to drive demand for oil and gas. (Bloomberg)

COMMENTARY: The next president can force the financial sector to take climate change seriously without the help of Congress, David Roberts explains. (Vox)

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