OVERSIGHT: The Austin, Texas, city council will consider firing its city manager after an ice storm knocked out power for thousands of customers for days, and the city was slow to communicate a timeline for power restoration. (Texas Tribune)

• Arkansas expects to add 2.3 GW of solar power over the next five years, including a 512 kW array on a school and a 4.2 MW facility on an egg producer. (Talk Business & Politics)
• A Virginia church whose request to install solar panels was denied by an architectural review board will appeal the decision to the city council. (Daily Progress)
• A Virginia county board votes to limit the size of solar farms to 300 acres. (Culpeper Star-Exponent)
• A North Carolina arts museum announces it will use a state energy efficiency initiative to pay for the installation of a 100 kW rooftop solar array. (Winston-Salem Journal)
• Dominion Energy announces it will no longer invest in unregulated solar projects to generate investment tax credits, and likely will sell its portfolio of such projects. (Utility Dive)

EMISSIONS: Critics say Duke Energy’s plan to meet North Carolina emissions-reduction law relies too heavily on natural gas plants instead of renewables and energy storage. (WFAE)

• Michigan is announced as the location for a planned Ford electric vehicle battery factory that Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin spurned last month. (CleanTechnica)
• South Carolina launches a website to showcase its involvement with the growing electric vehicle industry. (WMBF)

WIND: Developers build a growing number of wind farms in northwest Oklahoma. (CHNI News)

• Texans build mutual aid networks to help each other after extreme weather and power outages. (Texas Tribune)
• Smart meters installed by Memphis, Tennessee’s electric utility are failing, delaying roughly $12.5 million in utility bills from being sent to customers. (Daily Memphian, subscription)
• North Carolina officials are alarmed at recent incidents in which electrical substations were damaged by gunfire, sparking a conversation about grid security and political extremism. (Greensboro News & Record)

OIL & GAS: Chevron sees a spike in its fourth-quarter profits due to production growth in the Permian Basin. (Odessa American)

• A Kentucky coal company and an official in charge of coal dust sampling plead guilty to falsifying records. (Paintsville Herald)
• The head of West Virginia’s coal association presses state lawmakers to approve tax credits for coal-fired energy and a series of other bills to benefit the industry. (State Journal)

HYDROGEN: West Virginia officials pursue a “blue” hydrogen hub in Appalachia, but critics say the project would exacerbate problems with natural gas extraction. (WTAP)

EFFICIENCY: A North Carolina school system has saved more than $30 million over 14 years by installing energy efficient measures. (Morganton News Herald)

UTILITIES: The CEO of an Arkansas electric cooperative complains high fuel costs, government interference and the decline of fossil fuels are hampering its ability to deliver affordable, reliable power. (Arkansas Business)

COMMENTARY: A Virginia county board that approved an ordinance restricting the size of solar projects should add additional restrictions to limit utility-scale projects, writes an architect. (Culpeper Star-Exponent)

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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.