OIL & GAS: A federal judge rejects a Trump-era approval of a western Colorado oil and gas drilling project, saying the administration failed to account for the project’s climate impacts. (Colorado Sun)

California regulators find methane leaking from a pair of idle oil wells near a Bakersfield residential neighborhood, raising concerns that the problem could be widespread. (Los Angeles Times)
California regulators continue to say irrigating crops with oil and gas wastewater is safe, even though research shows it can lower crop yields and harm organisms. (Inside Climate News)
• Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado introduces a bill that would ban oil and gas drilling on public lands in a portion of the western part of the state. (E&E News, subscription)
California regulators fine a Bay Area refinery and its contractors $1.75 million for safety violations resulting in the death of a worker last year. (Associated Press)
Opponents of a now-canceled Oregon liquefied natural gas export terminal sue federal officials to release information related to alleged surveillance of protesters. (E&E News, subscription) 

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UTILITIES: Public Service Company of New Mexico seeks 700 MW of new resources in the next year to replace a retiring coal plant’s capacity and to compensate for solar project construction delays. (Power Engineering)

GRID: Heavy, wet snow damages Colorado utility lines, leaving more than 200,000 people without power. (Associated Press)  

A 225 KW solar array allows a remote Alaska Arctic village to shut down its diesel power plant for several hours each day. (Anchorage Daily News)
• A New Mexico nanoscale solar-generator developer partners with a manufacturer to scale up commercial production of “quantum dots” that could be used in solar-generating windows. (Albuquerque Journal)
A southern New Mexico zoning commission greenlights two 5 MW community solar projects, pending state approval. (Roswell Daily Record)   

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)
Xcel Energy’s preliminary plan to construct a pumped hydropower storage facility in a western Colorado canyon sparks opposition among area residents. (Colorado Sun)  

COAL: Alaska utility officials weigh whether to close a 55-year-old, 28 MW coal power plant or spend $30 million to upgrade pollution control equipment. (Fairbanks Daily News-Miner) 

CLIMATE: Boulder, Colorado, officials seek public input on the proposed renewal of a utility tax on large businesses that would generate about $5 million annually for climate and resilience programs. (Colorado Daily)

TRANSPORTATION: A battery storage manufacturer focused on marine applications plans to establish a factory in Washington state. (news release)

• An Arizona energy policy analyst says Salt River Project should conduct a competitive bid process to increase its generation capacity rather than build a controversial natural gas power plant. (Arizona Republic)
A Utah columnist says the state’s governor’s energy plan lacks specifics and tangible goals, but provides a starting point for policymaking. (Salt Lake Tribune)

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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.