COAL: Utah regulators order the state’s only open-pit coal mine to close and to begin permanent cleanup work in March if it fails to provide a $13.4 million reclamation bond. (Salt Lake Tribune)

ALSO:
Arizona regulators consider whether and how much they should require utilities to pay to communities affected by coal plant shutdowns. (Arizona Daily Star)
Wyoming lawmakers propose a bill meant to discourage coal plant shutdowns by requiring utilities to install carbon capture equipment on facilities slated for retirement or sell the plant to a buyer that would. (Casper Star-Tribune)

OIL & GAS:
A federal judge rules the Bureau of Land Management illegally failed to consider impacts to the imperiled Gunnison sage grouse when issuing oil and gas leases in southwest Colorado, but stops short of vacating the leases. (Grand Junction Sentinel)
A coalition of environmental groups sues the Biden administration over its Utah railway approval, saying it ignored the impact of extracting and burning up to 350,000 barrels of crude oil the railroad is expected to carry daily. (Reuters)
Colorado’s largest oil and gas producer seeks an exemption from the state’s ban on drilling within 2,000 feet of homes. (Colorado Sun)  
The Biden administration asks a federal appeals court to overturn last year’s order halting its public lands oil and gas leasing pause. (E&E News, subscription)
The U.S. EPA says it plans to finalize a ground-level ozone cleanup plan for the Ute Tribe’s portion of Utah’s Uinta Basin oil and gas field by the end of this year. (E&E News, subscription)

GRID: California regulators approve a plan to add 25.5 GW of renewable generation and 15 GW of storage and demand response resources to the grid by 2032. (Reuters)

MARIJUANA: Missoula, Montana’s city council considers rules to mitigate energy-intensive cannabis cultivation’s impacts on the grid. (Missoulian)

TRANSPORTATION: Montana is eligible for $42.9 million in federal infrastructure funds to build electric vehicle charging stations, but state transportation officials so far have no plan for construction. (Billings Gazette)

CLEAN ENERGY: A large Utah city is wary of joining a state renewable energy program because of potential cost increase impacts on low-income residents. (Salt Lake Tribune)

HYDROGEN: New Mexico lawmakers advance a hydrogen development boosting bill with stricter carbon emission limits than previously tabled proposals. (Albuquerque Journal)

SOLAR: NextEra Energy prepares to expand its 140 MW solar facility outside Roswell, New Mexico, by an additional 30 MW. (Roswell Daily Record)    

COMMENTARY:
A Montana energy attorney says the federal government’s increased bald eagle population estimates will benefit wind power developers by making it easier to obtain permits to accidentally kill the once-endangered birds. (Power Magazine)
A New Mexico editorial board urges state regulators and utilities to cooperatively work on solving pending summer energy shortages rather than “playing the blame game.” (Albuquerque Journal)
A California editorial board cautions that it could be years before officials know whether the Salton Sea region will be the “Saudi Arabia of lithium,” as national media outlets have predicted. (Desert Sun)

Jonathan P. Thompson

Jonathan hails from southwestern Colorado and has been writing about the land, cultures, and communities of the Western United States for more than two decades. He compiles the Western Energy News digest. He is the author of three books, a contributing editor at High Country News, and the editor of the Land Desk, an e-newsletter that provides coverage and context on issues critical to the West.