Western Energy News

Work begins on largest solar array in Texas

SOLAR: Construction begins on a 266 MW solar array in west Texas — the largest utility-scale project in the state(Houston Chronicle)

• In key markets such as California, Nevada and Texas, extreme weather events in 2017 caused up to a 5 percent decrease in the use of solar power, a new analysis shows. (Greentech Media)
• A Texas foundation that was launched by a former oilman to support chemical research is among the groups funding new research into Perovskite solar cells. (CleanTechnica)
• Utah and Colorado are among states expected to see accelerated growth in solar development this year. (Bloomberg)

• The head of an Oklahoma winder power group flatly rejects a state senator’s allegation the industry is spying on him in retaliation for his opposition to wind energy subsidies. (Associated Press)
• Striving to have all of its electricity come from renewable energy sources by 2025, Nike signs an agreement to purchase 86 megawatts of power from a wind farm in Texas. (CNBC)
• A new federal law pushed by an Oklahoma Republican will give the military more oversight of wind turbine siting. (Norman Transcript)

• Attorneys question the validity of a health study that influenced the city of Oakland’s ban on coal shipments from Utah during the first week of a federal trial. (Salt Lake Tribune)
• The EPA is considering allowing states to regulate the handling and disposal of coal ash waste, a responsibility that Oklahoma has already taken on with questionable results. (ThinkProgress)

• The growth of frac sand mining in Texas has fuel competition with Wisconsin miners. (Associated Press)
• Utah Sens. Mike Lee and Orrin Hatch are among five senators backing a legislative proposal to shift responsibility of managing oil and gas development on public lands to states. (Deseret News)

• A bill to fund the Colorado Energy Office is winding through the state legislature, giving its supporters hope the agency might finally find bipartisan support for its mission. (Grand Junction Sentinel)
• Saying “The government is not your sugar daddy, no matter how hard the wind industry may wish,” an Oklahoma legislator filed a bill this week that seeks to abolish tax credits for renewable energy sources. (Norman Transcript)

NUCLEAR: Two Colorado uranium companies are among those asking the Trump administration for help in warding off the threat of imported uranium products from foreign countries. (Denver Business Journal)

TECHNOLOGY: An Indian company that uses solar energy, batteries and rice husks converted to biofuels to power remote villages in Asia and Africa is moving its headquarters to Colorado. (Denver Post)

COMMENTARY: A former Texas utility regulator says the conservative energy movement should focus on promoting competition rather than “subsidizing the past.” (National Review)

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