SOLAR: A new Louisiana law aims to avoid “orphan” solar projects by requiring decommissioning plans for large facilities, but critics say a carve-out for utilities unfairly targets independent companies while exempting many planned and all current solar farms. (Louisiana Illuminator)

ALSO:
• A New Orleans coalition looks to place solar and battery resilience hubs at 16 locations across the city, plus eight elsewhere in Louisiana. (WVUE)
• A new solar co-op and several other coastal Virginia organizations work to counter the rising cost of solar installations. (Virginian-Pilot)
• An Arkansas utility begins operation of a 4.8 MW solar farm. (KLRT)

EMISSIONS:
• The U.S. Supreme Court prepares to rule in a case in which two coal companies and 17 Republican states led by West Virginia are challenging the EPA’s ability to regulate emissions from fossil fuel-fired power plants. (Reuters, Outside)
Louisiana’s net-zero goal is boosted by its 50-year, $50 billion coastal master plan, but still faces a tenuous path given the state’s reliance on the oil and gas industry and uncertain political future. (Christian Science Monitor)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• North Carolina researchers develop a computer model to identify where electric vehicle drivers need to recharge and direct them to places with chargers and enough electricity to handle demand. (Raleigh News & Observer)
• Florida Power & Light names a contractor to participate in a program to place electric vehicle chargers at customers’ homes for a fixed monthly fee. (news release)

OIL & GAS:
• A gas and oil exploration company begins production at two Gulf of Mexico wells about 60 miles from Louisiana. (NOLA.com)
• A Virginia county sees its fuel costs nearly double from last fiscal year, while a neighboring city is paying well below public prices because it buys through long-term, set price contracts. (Danville Register & Bee)

PIPELINES:
• Virginia regulators approve a 65-mile biogas pipeline network across a river and two swamps for a Dominion Energy and Smithfield Foods venture to turn methane from hog farms into natural gas. (Smithfield Times)
• Two community meetings are scheduled for July for a planned 37-mile pipeline connecting a Texas oil terminal to a coastal Louisiana port. (Port Arthur News)

TRANSPORTATION: Three advocacy groups in Austin, Texas, sue the state transportation department to reconsider its plan to expand 28 miles of interstate. (Austin American-Statesman)

TRANSITION: A Virginia city council considers a developer’s plans to remediate a defunct power plant into six blocks of mixed-use buildings. (Alexandria Now)

COMMENTARY:
• Volvo Trucks’ production of an electric truck for a local company portends the shift toward electric vehicles and opportunities for Virginia to get in on the industry, writes an editor. (Cardinal News)
• Eastern Kentucky should look to “dispersed tourism” involving many small businesses devoted to local specialties to provide an economic path forward from coal while avoiding mass-scale tourism that results in low-paying service jobs, writes a college student. (Paintsville Herald)

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Mason Adams

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.