SOLAR: California utilities square off with the solar industry after regulators reopen the record on a proposal to slash net metering payments for rooftop solar. (Utility Dive)

ALSO: California solar industry officials say a combination of rising equipment costs, supply chain constraints and a federal probe of Asian imports has caused the delay or cancellation of numerous projects. (Monterey County Weekly)

OIL & GAS:
Environmental groups sue the Biden administration, saying the agency violated federal law when it issued 3,500 drilling permits in New Mexico and Wyoming during the first 16 months of the administration. (CNN)
Federal officials delay an oil and gas lease sale in New Mexico to complete an environmental review and resolve protests. (Carlsbad Current-Argus)
Some California conservationists say decommissioned offshore oil rigs should remain in place as artificial reefs and fish habitat. (KCET)
High diesel prices drive up production costs for Wyoming oil, gas and coal operations. (Casper Star-Tribune)

UTILITIES:
California regulators fine three utilities more than $22 million for “poor execution” of public safety power shutoffs in 2019 aimed at preventing equipment from sparking wildfires. (Associated Press)
An Arizona regulator’s inquiry finds the state’s largest utility spent $4.8 million on lobbying over the past nine years, along with tens of millions of dollars on advertising and donations to political groups. (Energy and Policy Institute)
New Mexico regulators open an inquiry into utilities’ plans to manage vegetation and otherwise reduce the risk of sparking wildfires. (NM Political Report)

BIOFUEL: Environmental groups sue to block plans to convert two Bay Area oil refineries into biofuel production plants, saying they would strain food supplies and emit greenhouse gasses. (Mercury News)

TRANSPORTATION:
Wyoming transportation officials seek public input on a plan to use federal funds to build electric vehicle charging infrastructure across the state. (Laramie Boomerang)  
A California transit agency is aggressively seeking more bus drivers to accommodate rising ridership spurred by high gas prices. (KCRA)

ELECTRIFICATION: A California county watchdog group calls on local governments to ban natural gas hookups in new construction and require energy efficiency measures. (Mercury News)

WIND: Arizona conservationists say wind developers in the state have avoided high bat and bird mortality by considering wildlife migratory corridors when siting projects. (KJZZ)

GRID:
New Mexico and other renewables-rich states call on federal regulators to streamline permitting for and lower other barriers to developing long-distance transmission lines. (Bloomberg Law)
Colorado energy officials urge utilities to step up demand response efforts to prepare the grid to handle the strain of climate change-exacerbated diminished hydropower and extreme heat. (Denver Post)

MICROGRIDS: Microsoft plans to develop a 100 MW, natural gas-powered microgrid to electrify a large data center being built in San Jose, California.  (Microgrid Knowledge) 

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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.