UTILITIES: Southern Company reduces its cost estimate for Georgia Power’s share of the Vogtle nuclear plant by $70 million, though the project still remains billions of dollars over budget. (Reuters)

ALSO:
• The announcement comes as Southern Company’s CEO announces the company’s profits are up nearly $1 billion over last year, and as Georgia Power seeks a rate increase. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
• Virginia’s Supreme Court upholds a surcharge that Dominion Energy added to customers’ bills for the state’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. (Virginia Mercury)
• A North Carolina lawmaker says Duke Energy’s monopoly status will be the “elephant in the room” when the state legislature convenes next year. (Charlotte Business Journal, subscription)
• The New Orleans city council will consider Entergy’s request to raise customer bills to cover $170 million in costs from Hurricane Ida. (Times-Picayune, subscription)

COAL: Addressing the Governor’s Energy Summit earlier this week, Sen. Joe Manchin says the Inflation Recovery Act “creates new opportunities for West Virginia’s coal communities.” (MetroNews)

GRID: A new federal program could help establish microgrids in rural West Virginia communities that have struggled with reliability issues. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• Experts say a lack of incentives and infrastructure is holding back electric vehicle adoption in South Carolina. (Carolina News & Reporter)
• Georgia school districts will receive $51.1 million in federal grants for electric school buses. (Georgia Public Broadcasting)
• Charlotte, North Carolina’s airport is leading a growing industry trend of replacing diesel shuttle buses with electric ones. (Canary Media)

SOLAR:
• Developers outlined plans for a 125 MW solar array in western Kentucky at a public meeting this week. (Paducah Sun)
• A power supplier for rural co-ops in Virginia is building five new solar projects totaling 22.5 megawatts. (Virginia Mercury)
• A North Carolina startup offers a service to connect operators of solar panels with vendors who can clean them. (GrepBeat)

OIL & GAS:
• Prices for natural gas in West Texas dropped below zero dollars recently for the first time in two years and production overwhelmed pipeline capacity. (Bloomberg)
• A developer is proposing a liquified natural gas export facility at the site of a former Florida paper mill. (WMBB)

COMMENTARY: A utility is offering rebates to Virginia customers for new natural gas appliances, but an advocate says they’ll be better off waiting for new incentives next year for electric ones. (Virginia Mercury)

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Ken Paulman

Ken is the director of the Energy News Network at Fresh Energy and is a founding editor of both Midwest Energy News and Southeast Energy News. Prior to joining Fresh Energy, he was the managing editor for online news at Minnesota Public Radio. He started his journalism career in 2002 as a copy editor for the Duluth News Tribune before spending five years at the Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington, where he worked as a copy editor, online producer, features editor and night city editor. A Nebraska native, Ken has a bachelor's degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a master's degree from the University of Oregon. He is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors.