OIL & GAS: Dominion Energy asks Virginia regulators to approve a permit for a new natural gas peaker plant it wants to build to power more data centers and electric vehicles, but critics say it runs counter to Virginia’s clean energy goals. (Virginia Mercury)

EFFICIENCY: A federal program to help low-income households access energy-efficient appliances has turned into a political fight after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis vetoed the program, potentially leaving $346.3 million in federal funding untapped. (Florida Phoenix)

PIPELINES:
• A Virginia judge grants injunctions against six protestors who have delayed work on the Mountain Valley Pipeline, but seems skeptical about the company’s request to block two organizations from raising money and promoting protests against the project. (Roanoke Times)
• A Tennessee lawmaker is named as the Sierra Club’s “Changemaker of the Year” for his work helping stop the Byhalia Connection Pipeline, which would have cut through mostly Black neighborhoods in Memphis, Tennessee. (WPLN)

SOLAR:
• A Virginia county board delays a vote on Dominion Energy’s 98 MW solar farm because local leaders want to adjust the path of transmission lines to the project. (Mecklenburg Sun)
• Samsung announces a deal with a renewables company to sell a 3 GW solar and energy storage system consisting of 15 projects across Texas. (Korea Economic Daily)

NUCLEAR: Federal nuclear safety officials are alarmed after discovering a pattern of cracks and leaks in a South Carolina nuclear power plant’s emergency generator system going back 20 years. (The State)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Tulane University begins using nine new electric shuttles it received through U.S. Energy Department grants. (Tulane Hullabaloo)

GRID: The head of San Antonio, Texas’ municipal utility warns the Texas power grid won’t get through a hard winter without the threat of collapsing. (San Antonio Express-News)

COAL: An Alabama river advocate warns of potential contamination from coal ash stored in an unlined pond at a power plant that was shuttered in 2019 and demolished in 2021. (WVTM)

RECYCLING: Research at the University of Kentucky leads to a startup company that plans to recycle electronics waste, beginning with used solar panels, for minerals and metals that can be reused in other products. (news release)

CLIMATE:
• The Texas state climatologist declares 2023 stands just behind 2011 as the second hottest summer on record. (Texas Tribune)
• A federal court in Louisiana is set to hear a lawsuit filed by 10 states and other entities that seeks to block changes to the nation’s flood insurance program that are causing significant rate hikes for residents. (NOLA.com)

UTILITIES:
• West Virginia regulators approve an $88.8 million fuel cost rate increase for Appalachian Power and Wheeling Power despite hundreds of comments in opposition. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)
• A Kentucky county brings back an industrial development authority that’s been inactive for several years so it can access funding from the Tennessee Valley Authority. (Kentucky New Era)

COMMENTARY:
• After recent storms that resulted in significant utility price increases, Oklahoma residents and businesses should look to rooftop solar as a way to lower energy prices, writes a retired professor. (Tulsa World)
Rapid advances in batteries and other energy storage technologies are making the transition to 100% renewable energy feasible and affordable, writes a Virginia resident. (Winchester Star)

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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.