WIND: Experts say two offshore wind farms off North Carolina’s Outer Banks and a major turbine blade facility close by in Virginia could bring jobs and prosperity to northeastern North Carolina, but warn the state must address extreme poverty and economic disparity that mark the region. (Energy News Network)

ALSO: A western Virginia citizens group sues to stop a mountain wind farm, taking issue with a recent decision to grant the project a pandemic-related deadline extension. (Roanoke Times)

OIL & GAS:
• Energy companies offer a combined $192 million for drilling rights in the Gulf of Mexico in the first government lease auction under President Joe Biden. (Associated Press)
• ExxonMobil uses the auction to snag rights to shallow water tracts, which analysts say is likely a move to support a carbon capture and storage hub for heavy industries around the Houston Ship Channel. (S&P Global)

COAL: A federal jury finds four former coal company officials not guilty of dodging federal dust rules at two underground Kentucky mines. (Associated Press)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• Electric vehicle maker Arrival unveils a new electric bus that will sell at around the price of a conventional diesel bus and be produced in South Carolina beginning next year. (Reuters)
• Cadillac officials stop in North Texas to show off the company’s first all-electric SUV. (WFAA)

GRID:
• Entergy Louisiana tells regulators it owes up to $4.4 billion for restoring power after a string of storms, needs a $1 billion loan to meet short-term costs, and will likely need to increase customers’ bills by $11-15 per month for the next 15 years. (The Advocate, Louisiana Illuminator)
• The interim CEO of Texas’ grid manager says he’s concerned a provision allowing natural gas suppliers to pay a $150 fee to opt out of winterization requirements could threaten power reliability this winter. (KXAS)

POLITICS: U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow cites U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin’s support of a 2019 pension bailout for union coal miners as a reason why he should now accept an union-friendly electric vehicle tax credit as part of Democrats’ spending bill. (Bloomberg Law)

SOLAR: Home security company ADT will launch a renewables division after it pays $825 million to acquire a Louisiana-based solar company. (NOLA.com)

UTILITIES: An Oklahoma subsidiary of American Electric Power seeks to purchase up to 2,800 MW of wind energy and 1,350 MW of solar energy resources. (news release/Tulsa World)

CLIMATE: A Texas Congress member says “there is no doubt” climate change is contributing to a growing number of migrants arriving at the southern border, underscoring the need to pass climate investments as part of Democrats’ federal spending bill. (WEAR)

COMMENTARY:
• Renewable energy companies have not historically built storage in Texas because the state’s lightly regulated market rewards low costs and not reliability, writes the chief executive of an energy company. (Dallas Morning News)
• Newly signed North Carolina energy legislation sets a goal of reducing carbon emissions but lacks teeth and drastically raises rates on families and small businesses, writes a field coordinator for an Appalachian advocacy group. (Appalachian Voices)

Mason Adams

Mason has worked as a journalist since 2001, covering Appalachian communities and the issues that affect them. He compiles the Southeast Energy News digest. Mason previously worked as a wildlife biologist before moving into journalism by freelancing at Coast Weekly in Monterey, California, before taking an internship in 2001 at High Country News. He wrote for the Enterprise Mountaineer in western North Carolina and the Roanoke Times in western Virginia before going freelance in 2012. His work has appeared in Southerly, Daily Yonder, Mother Jones, Huffington Post, WVPB’s Inside Appalachia and elsewhere. Mason was born and raised in Clifton Forge, Virginia, and now lives with his family and a small herd of goats in Floyd County, Virginia.