TRANSPORTATION: California regulators, the federal government, and car manufacturers agree on the need to finalize stricter tailpipe emissions standards, but environmentalists are concerned that automakers are making promises on electrification they may not keep. (Los Angeles Times) 

ALSO:
• Ford says it will double its investment in electric vehicles to $22 billion by 2025. (Reuters)
• Amazon has ordered hundreds of trucks that run on compressed natural gas as the company seeks to shift away from diesel. (Reuters)
• A Minnesota startup looks to fill an underserved niche by specializing in customized, medium-duty electric trucks for commercial and government fleets. (Energy News Network)

UTILITIES:
• Representatives of a dark-money political advocacy group sign a guilty plea admitting involvement in a major bribery scandal involving Ohio’s power plant subsidy law. (Cincinnati Enquirer)
• Former FirstEnergy subsidiary Energy Harbor says it may decline the $1 billion in subsidies for two Ohio nuclear plants included in the scandal-tainted legislation. (Associated Press)

CLIMATE:
• Advocates seek ways to hold the Biden administration to its pledge to ensure disadvantaged communities see 40% of the benefits from climate change spending. (Politico)
• Businesses are divided over Democrats’ proposal to require financial disclosures on climate risks. (Politico)
• A former ExxonMobil engineer explains why he left the company to focus on fighting climate change. (Inside Climate News)
• Environmental groups seek to push utilities to look at 2030 rather than 2050 as they develop decarbonization plans. (S&P Global)
• Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker sends back a twice-passed climate bill to the legislature with proposed amendments that strikes a more conciliatory tone than his previous rejection. (CommonWealth Magazine)

CLEAN ENERGY: The Energy information Administration projects the share of renewable electricity generation in the U.S. will double by 2050 to 42%. (news release)

SOLAR: Dominion Energy wants to significantly increase a fee charged to South Carolina customers with solar panels on their homes or businesses and change how they are paid for unused generation sent back to the grid. (Post and Courier)

COAL: The drop in coal-fired generation during the pandemic declined more than any other power source and could accelerate the shift to clean energy, researchers say. (New York Times)

OIL & GAS:
• Hedge funds are betting on oil prices recovering after big declines in 2020. (Reuters)
• An effort to push Texas lawmakers to pass a 25% tax on gas that is vented or flared during oil production encounters stiff opposition from the oil industry. (Austin American-Statesman)

PIPELINES: Some Democrats in Congress are calling on the Biden administration to cancel the Dakota Access pipeline after similar action against Keystone XL. (E&E News, subscription)

HYDROPOWER: A Republican Idaho congressman releases a $34 billion proposal to breach four Lower Snake River hydroelectric dams to help preserve salmon populations. (Seattle Times)

GRID: Virginia’s largest utilities explore pilot programs to expand rural broadband by sharing fiber cables built during grid upgrades with local internet providers. (Energy News Network)

COMMENTARY: Environmental justice advocates say a switch to clean transportation will benefit communities of color who are disproportionately impacted by the COVID pandemic. (Energy News Network)

Ken Paulman

Ken Paulman

Ken is the director of the Energy News Network at Fresh Energy and is a founding editor of both Midwest Energy News and Southeast Energy News. Prior to joining Fresh Energy, he was the managing editor for online news at Minnesota Public Radio. He started his journalism career in 2002 as a copy editor for the Duluth News Tribune before spending five years at the Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington, where he worked as a copy editor, online producer, features editor and night city editor. A Nebraska native, Ken has a bachelor's degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a master's degree from the University of Oregon. He is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors.