SOLAR: Solar panel manufacturer Qcells is expected to announce it will expand its existing Georgia manufacturing facility and build a second factory near Atlanta in what could be the largest clean energy manufacturing investment in U.S. history. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

ALSO: A troubled solar installer downsizes in Tennessee amid complaints and investigations in Kentucky and elsewhere. (WHAS)

GRID:
• The Texas Supreme Court considers arguments challenging the state power grid manager’s long-standing contention that governmental immunity shields it from any lawsuits. (Austin American-Statesman)
• Texas’ Republican state legislature focuses potential grid fixes more on propping up the oil and gas industry than facilitating the ongoing clean energy transition. (Texas Observer)

RENEWABLES: Texas is adding significant amounts of new wind, solar and battery power to its grid, including almost 654 MW in December, with another 2.9 GW of capacity nearing commercial operation and yet another 2.5 GW in the works. (S&P Global)

PIPELINES: A Kentucky court will hear arguments whether parts of a state-owned arboretum and research forest can be condemned under eminent domain for construction of a natural gas pipeline. (WDRB)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• Tennessee economic development officials answer questions about LG Chem’s plans to build a large factory to produce cathode material for electric vehicle batteries. (Clarksville Now)
• South Carolina officials say electric vehicle maker Rivian will build and maintain charging stations in two-thirds of its state parks by the end of 2023. (WCSC)

HYDROGEN: A Texas company plans to use 1.4 GW of wind and solar to power its planned green hydrogen plant. (Inside Climate News)

OIL & GAS: Louisiana oil and gas leaders predict industry growth and new jobs in 2023. (WAFB)

NUCLEAR:
• Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates visits West Virginia to talk nuclear power and energy transition with U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin. (WSAZ)
• Southwest Virginia lawmakers say they’ll work on legislation to facilitate Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s plans to build a small modular nuclear reactor in the region. (Bristol Now)

COAL: An insurance company created by West Virginia lawmakers to offer an alternative bonding source for coal operators still hasn’t insured anyone in the nine months since it was founded. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

BIOGAS: The push to develop hog-to-gas operations in North Carolina worries residents who’ve already dealt with pollution from pig farms for years. (Bitter Southerner)

UTILITIES: Alabama Power names a new president and CEO. (Daily Energy Insider)

COMMENTARY:
• A Virginia state lawmaker suggests Dominion Energy adapt to a new era in which its actions are viewed skeptically by ceasing political contributions and pushing for simplified utilities law. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
• Duke Energy’s rolling blackouts in the Carolinas last week were caused by its overreliance on fossil fuels after coal and natural gas plants malfunctioned, writes a clean energy advocate. (Greensboro News & Record)
• Louisiana rushes to embrace hydrogen to clean up emissions and secure the future of its vast petrochemical manufacturing industry even in a more carbon-free world, writes an editorial board. (NOLA.com)

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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.