COAL ASH: The U.S. EPA’s crackdown on coal ash disposal rules could adversely affect Black communities in Alabama and beyond, as landfills that accept coal ash from across state lines are disproportionately located in low-income, minority neighborhoods. (Energy News Network/Chicago Investigative Project)

• Activists along the Gulf Coast say the region was sacrificed to more offshore leasing and drilling in exchange for support of the recent climate spending package. (New York Times)
• The Biden administration accepts $190 million in bids for offshore oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico that were rejected by a judge but subsequently approved in the climate spending bill. (Associated Press)
• Federal investigators raid the Louisiana offices of a deep-water drilling company as part of a probe into a leaking offshore well owned by its predecessor company. (Bloomberg)
• On the heels of the recent sales of three Appalachian oil & gas companies, industry investors see few remaining large, privately backed drillers to target for acquisition. (S&P Global)

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GRID: A study finds climate change is exacerbating power outages, with Texas reporting the largest number of outages since 2000, but more extreme storms affecting Louisiana as well. (CNN,

SOLAR: New tax credits and a growing number of schools and customers investing in rooftop solar are turning the solar industry into a viable career pathway for Appalachian Virginia residents. (CleanTechnica)

WIND: The federal government launches a regional initiative partnering with East Coast states to build out a supply chain for offshore wind, with a planned Virginia plant to build turbine blades leading the way. (Reuters)

HYDROGEN: A developer announces plans to build a hydrogen plant at a shuttered coal plant in Virginia that had previously been targeted for redevelopment as a solar and storage facility. (Virginia Mercury) 

• Federal investigators report a 2019 Kentucky pipeline explosion that killed one person and destroyed five homes was caused by a manufacturing defect in the pipeline. (Associated Press)
• An environmental group schedules a public meeting to discuss Dominion Energy’s plan to use eminent domain to claim land from Black and working class landowners for a South Carolina pipeline. (news release) 

COAL: An environmental group sues an Alabama coal company for allegedly discharging pollution without a permit. (Patch)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Environmental groups will host an electric vehicle showcase at a Northern Virginia university next weekend. (Sun Gazette)

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ACTIVISM: A nonprofit advocacy group develops a user-friendly platform to help Houston residents track, comment and request public hearings on the rapidly growing number of projects seeking pollution permits. (Inside Climate News)

COMMENTARY: Federal funding for a pilot project to repurpose dredging material on a historic Virginia island threatened by rising seas won’t matter if Congress doesn’t adopt a more serious, comprehensive approach to climate change, writes a columnist. (Virginia Mercury)

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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.