OIL & GAS: The Biden administration releases a draft environment review for ConocoPhillips’ proposed Willow drilling project in Alaska, opening the door to approval of a scaled-back version of the project environmentalists call a “carbon bomb.” (New York Times)

ALSO:
Colorado regulators ban two oil and gas companies from operating in the state for several alleged violations and plan to plug and clean up 106 of the firms’ wells. (Greeley Tribune)
Hawaii health officials say a U.S. Navy report underestimates the amount of petroleum that leaked from a fueling facility blamed for contaminating drinking water supplies. (Honolulu Star-Advertiser)     

SOLAR: A California county levies a per-acre annual fee on utility-scale solar installation to offset a state property tax exemption on such projects. (Bakersfield Californian) 

GRID: More than 1,500 Powerwall energy storage owners enroll in a Tesla and Pacific Gas & Electric pilot program that will use the batteries as a virtual power plant. (Green Car Reports)

UTILITIES:
• Arizona Public Service proposes a $400 million rate increase to pay for the installation of pollution control equipment on an aging coal power plant. (Phoenix New Times)
Climate advocates urge Western utilities to bury power lines to prevent them from sparking wildfires, but many utilities balk at the high cost. (Inside Climate News)

CLIMATE: An Oregon clean energy fund asks Portland’s city council to approve 66 climate justice grants totaling $111 million, even though an audit found flaws in the program’s accounting. (KOIN)

EFFICIENCY: Honolulu, Hawaii’s city council votes to require building owners to track and publicly report structures’ energy use by fuel, greenhouse gas emissions and energy efficiency ratings. (Honolulu Star-Advertiser)

TRANSPORTATION:
New Mexico begins building an electric vehicle charging network to be paid for with federal and state infrastructure funds. (Associated Press)
After four northern California cities ban construction of new gasoline stations, advocates urge Los Angeles to follow suit. (Los Angeles Times)
• Colorado multimodal transportation advocates urge Denver officials to build more electric scooter and e-bike infrastructure to accommodate record-breaking numbers of micro-mobility rideshare users. (Greeley Tribune)

NUCLEAR: The U.S. Energy Department grants New Mexico researchers $8.5 million to develop a method to recycle spent nuclear fuel from decommissioned power plants. (Carlsbad Current-Argus)

COMMENTARY: A Colorado editorial board urges federal regulators to block a proposal to ship Utah oil by rail to Gulf Coast refineries, saying the risk of a spill into the Colorado River is too high. (Post-Independent)

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Jonathan P. Thompson

Jonathan hails from southwestern Colorado and has been writing about the land, cultures, and communities of the Western United States for more than two decades. He compiles the Western Energy News digest. He is the author of three books, a contributing editor at High Country News, and the editor of the Land Desk, an e-newsletter that provides coverage and context on issues critical to the West.