Southeast Energy News

Utility official personally directed employees to pack New Orleans meeting

CORRECTION: An Entergy official directed employees to pack a New Orleans City Council meeting in order to shut out opponents of its power plant proposal, but they were not the actors paid to attend a subsequent meeting. An earlier headline confused the two events.

UTILITIES: A high-ranking Entergy official personally directed paid supporters employees to fill a New Orleans City Council committee meeting before opponents of its power plant project arrived, according to newly surfaced emails. (The Times-Picayune)

MORE: The fate of Entergy’s proposed $210 million, 128-megawatt gas-fired power plant in New Orleans might not be known for months, with the City Council expected to appoint a team to investigate the company today. (E&E News, subscription)

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VW SETTLEMENT: A provision in North Carolina’s new budget threatens to delay and possibly disqualify the state from its $92 million share of the Volkswagen emissions settlement. (Energy News Network)

COAL:
• A federal appeals court strikes down a judge’s order requiring the EPA and West Virginia to address coal-mining-related water pollution. (E&E News, subscription)
• It’s been four years since a devastating coal ash spill in North Carolina, and still little action to address the problem. (Salon)

FRACKING: Duke University researchers discover that chemicals used in fracking stimulate fat cell growth, which has public health implications for people who depend on water from polluted aquifers. (News & Observer)

BIOMASS:
• A Georgia utility regulator wants 100 megawatts of biomass energy included in Georgia Power’s upcoming long-term plan. (E&E News, subscription)
• Wood pellet plants in the Southeast feed a growing global appetite as the U.K. and other countries move away from coal. (PRI’s The World)

GENERATION: A lawsuit between a Mississippi power plant owner and Texas’ largest seller of electricity sheds light on how flat demand and falling prices have battered the industry in recent years. (Houston Chronicle)

WIND: A Shreveport utility gets permission from Louisiana regulators to buy part of the nation’s largest wind project in Oklahoma. (The Advocate)  

TRANSMISSION: Florida residents object to the proposed route for a Duke Energy transmission line they say will be an eyesore and decrease property values. (News 13)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• A $100 electric vehicle registration fee passed by Tennessee lawmakers last summer has been paid by 595 owners so far. (Fox 17)
• A Georgia museum adds electric vehicle charging stations to its parking lot. (Polk County Standard Journal, subscription)  

EFFICIENCY: An Alabama utility installs 200 new HVAC units at a public housing development. (WAAY 31)

ACTIVISM: North Carolina activists will rally and visit government offices today as part of a planned Clean Energy Action and Justice Day. (Coastal Review Online)

COMMENTARY: A South Carolina pastor and an environmental advocate say South Carolina should shift to true renewables and clean energy. (Post and Courier)

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