OIL & GAS: Environmental groups ask a court to cancel federal oil and gas leases sold in Wyoming in 2022, saying the Biden administration’s minimal review violated environmental laws. (Bloomberg Law)

ALSO:
• Southern Wyoming residents push back against an uptick of oil and gas drilling in populated areas, saying it affects air quality and public health. (Wyoming Public Radio)
Alaska lawmakers consider revoking an oil production tax credit and establishing a state sales tax to offset projected oil and gas revenue declines. (Alaska Beacon)
• Conservationists say the Biden administration’s Willow oil and gas project review failed to consider the new drilling’s climate impacts on polar bears. (Slate)
Federal officials say a train derailment in Washington state resulting in a 3,100-gallon diesel fuel spill likely was caused by human error. (Seattle Times)


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HYDROPOWER:
• A series of wet winter storms increase hydropower generation capacity in California and the Southwest, but drier conditions are expected to diminish output in the Northwest. (S&P Global)
Crews begin dismantling and removing four hydropower dams on the Lower Klamath River in northern California. (Lost Coast Outpost)

SOLAR: A plan to build utility-scale solar installations on fallow farmland in California’s San Joaquin Valley runs up against a lack of adequate transmission capacity. (Inside Climate News)

MICROGRIDS: A southern California biodiesel production facility reduces energy consumption 35% by installing a solar-powered microgrid with battery backup. (Waste Dive)  

STORAGE:
A Utah startup works to commercialize its residential-scale flywheel energy storage technology aimed at backing up rooftop solar. (KSLTV)
An Arizona electricity cooperative installs its third grid-scale battery storage facility in two years. (NRECA)

BATTERIES:
• A planned carbon-neutral battery-grade cobalt processing facility in a small southern Arizona town is expected to create about 300 jobs. (Arizona Republic)
Oregon researchers develop an electrolyte that raises zinc batteries’ efficiency to nearly 100%, making them a more feasible grid-scale energy storage alternative. (news release)

TRANSPORTATION:
Nevada regulators approve just $70 million of NV Energy’s $349 million transportation electrification plan, saying the utility’s original proposal was too broad. (Las Vegas Review-Journal)
An Arizona city begins replacing its hybrid-electric bus fleet with fully electric vehicles. (Arizona Daily Sun)

ELECTRIFICATION: A Colorado ski town becomes the state’s first municipality to require new homes and commercial buildings to be powered entirely by electricity. (Colorado Sun) 

GEOTHERMAL: New Mexico lawmakers pass a bill that would offer grants and loans for geothermal power development and establish a university research center focused on it. (Albuquerque Journal)

NUCLEAR: The operators of the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant in California say they must complete five years of work by the end of the year to apply to keep the facility operating beyond its scheduled 2025 retirement date. (Utility Dive)

COAL: Colorado regulators launch a probe of an underground abandoned coal mine blaze suspected of igniting the destructive 2021 Marshall Fire. (Boulder Daily Camera)

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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.