GRID: The U.S. Energy Department seeks an unprecedented expansion of high-voltage electricity lines to carry clean power by prioritizing shovel-ready projects and seeking state support for interregional connections. (E&E News)
• Federal Energy Regulatory Commission members debate whether climate change or renewable power is more to blame for this summer’s predicted high risks for power outages in much of the country. (Utility Dive)
• FERC says it will monitor natural gas and power markets for market manipulation this summer amid expected high prices. (Utility Dive)
• New England’s grid operator studies how it could help cut power sector emissions as critics say it’s been slow to respond to states’ climate goals. (Energy News Network)
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UTILITIES: Newly revealed text messages from a former Ohio utility regulator to a FirstEnergy executive suggested he knew that a grid modernization charge was likely illegal and that $456 million already collected from customers would likely not be refunded. (Energy News Network/Eye on Ohio)
• The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicts above-average heat across the continental U.S. this summer, with especially high temperatures expected in the Northeast and parts of the West. (New York Times)
• Warming nighttime temperatures rob people of about 44 hours of sleep per year, a study finds. (E&E News)
• President Biden announces Hyundai will spend $5.5 billion to build its first electric vehicle manufacturing plant in the U.S. near Savannah, Georgia. (Associated Press, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, CNBC)
• Local concerns over a proposed North Carolina lithium mine illustrate the growing conflict between residents and mining companies that could shape the next phase of the clean energy transition. (HuffPost/The Assembly)
EFFICIENCY: Conservation advocates say the Energy Department’s new efficiency standards for manufactured homes are too lax, while builders say the rules will jack up prices. (Utility Dive)
HEAT PUMPS: An international safety standards body votes to allow the use of more climate-friendly refrigerants in air conditioning units and heat pumps. (Inside Climate News)
OIL & GAS:
• A federal judge rejects a Trump-era approval of a Colorado oil and gas drilling project, saying the administration failed to account for climate impacts. (Colorado Sun)
• A Thai coal mining company agrees to buy natural gas fields in Texas from ExxonMobil subsidiaries for $750 million. (Forbes)
HYDROPOWER: Grid officials say climate change-caused drought is likely to diminish Northwest hydropower generation during heat waves, when California needs it most. (E&E News)
NUCLEAR: U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm emphasizes the need for a centralized location to store spent nuclear fuel in the U.S. (Associated Press)
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CARBON CAPTURE: A Portland, Maine, startup works to create a natural carbon capture and sequestration system by growing immense beds of kelp on buoys. (CNN)
COMMENTARY: Following John Oliver’s segment on utilities, a think tank director suggests four strategies for increasing utility accountability. (Energy News Network)