U.S. Energy News

Washington carbon tax bill dies in state legislature

CARBON TAX: An effort to pass a carbon tax in Washington dies after failing to get enough votes in the state Senate. (New York Times, Associated Press)

SOLAR:
• The cost of rooftop solar could fall as low as $0.05 per kWh by 2030, compared to 13 cents today, according to a DOE report. (Utility Dive)
• Pending tariffs on imported steel and aluminum could add up to 2 cents per watt to the cost of utility-scale solar projects. (Greentech Media)

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WIND: General Electric plans to build the world’s largest wind turbine off the coast of France, measuring 853 feet tall. (CNBC)

GEOTHERMAL: The restoration of an investment tax credit for orphaned technologies is helping to revive geothermal home energy businesses. (CBS)

BIOFUEL: President Trump suggests imposing a cap on the price of biofuel credits during a second White House meeting this week over the Renewable Fuel Standard. (Philadelphia Inquirer)

BIOMASS: A new study challenges the climate benefits of wood-based energy. (ecoRI news)

COAL: Top officials at Mississippi Power’s Kemper “clean coal” plant knew for years about design flaws and budget problems but withheld the information from regulators. (The Guardian)

COAL ASH: The U.S. EPA proposes changes to regulating coal ash that would give states more flexibility over disposal sites and save utilities millions of dollars in compliance costs. (Washington Post)

OIL & GAS:
• The American Petroleum Institute says tariffs on steel and aluminum imports are “inconsistent with the Administration’s efforts to bolster the U.S. economy” and would raise costs for industries that use pipelines. (The Hill)
Emails show the Interior Department was focused on the potential for oil and gas exploration at Utah’s protected Bears Ears National Monument as early as March 2017. (New York Times)
• Exxon Mobil is ending joint ventures with Russia’s state-owned oil company due to sanctions imposed in 2014. (The Hill)

UTILITIES:
• Most Ohio utilities say they are not ready to pass savings from federal tax reforms on to customers. (Midwest Energy News)
• A former National Renewable Energy Laboratory official will put his research to “real world” use as the new president and CEO of an electric cooperative in western Colorado. (Southwest Energy News)

REGULATION:
• Russians used social media propaganda on Facebook and Twitter to create discord in U.S. energy markets, according to a report released by House Republicans. (Grist, Greentech Media)
• Some experts say pending reforms to the nation’s largest electricity market, the PJM Interconnection, could amount to a bailout for aging coal and nuclear plants. (Utility Dive)

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CLIMATE: An EPA survey reveals the most and least climate resilient counties in the U.S. (Pacific Standard)

COMMENTARY:
• U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa writes in an op-ed to oil-rich Texas that biofuels are a key part of the national energy strategy. (Houston Chronicle)
• Democrats in Oregon and Washington are trying to pass carbon pricing policies, but it’s not at easy as it seems, writes David Roberts. (Vox)

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