ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Louisiana lawmakers advance a bill that attempts to prevent a monopoly on electric vehicle charging stations by excluding them from being considered a public utility and developing a rate structure. (Louisiana Illuminator) 

ALSO:
Only a tiny fraction of registered vehicles in Kentucky were electric in 2020, providing a baseline for growth as the state sees electric vehicle industry investment and moves to attract more. (WFPL)
• A Virginia school district is awarded a $2.3 million grant to purchase 10 electric school buses. (Zebra)

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STORAGE:
• An energy company announces the completion of a 260 MW battery storage facility in North Texas. (KXAS)
• Two battery storage industry representatives tell West Virginia lawmakers about the technology’s potential to power the state as it transitions and modernizes its energy production. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

PIPELINES: Pipeline developers seek federal permits to support two gas plants planned at former Tennessee Valley Authority coal sites, prompting concerns about environmental justice, climate change and drinking water. (WPLN)

COAL:
• Labor shortages and reluctance by operators to invest in greater production prevents Appalachia’s coal industry from fully revving up amid a spike in global coal demand and prices. (Ohio Valley ReSource)
• In the years since a 2008 coal ash spill in Tennessee, more than 50 cleanup workers have died while hundreds more have fallen ill, prompting survivors and families to sue the contracting company for damages. (WPLN)

OIL & GAS:
• A new report by a nonprofit advocacy group finds 13 hospitals, 228 schools and more than half a million people in South Florida are within one mile of truck and rail routes used to ship liquefied natural gas. (Florida Bulldog)
• Oil refiners are seeing record-breaking profit margins but stop short of building new refineries or reopening those shut down during the pandemic. (Marketplace)

SOLAR:
• Appalachian Power asks Virginia regulators for a rate increase to support the cost of purchased power from a 20 MW solar plant as part of its plan to add 500 MW of solar in the next three years. (Martinsville Bulletin)
• Florida residents extol the benefits of rooftop solar to lower their power bills amid rate spikes. (WFLX)

CLIMATE:
• West Virginia’s treasurer threatens to sue over U.S. regulators’ proposed mandates for companies to disclose their climate risk. (Reuters)
• Twelve of the 19 financial companies accused of oil and gas-boycotting policies under a new Texas law haven’t responded to an inquiry by the state treasurer. (Texan)

GRID: Duke Energy begins construction on a Florida electric utility substation as part of a project to move electricity for 48 miles along new transmission lines. (The Ledger)

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EFFICIENCY: The municipal utility in San Antonio, Texas, extends an energy efficiency program for another five years, with rooftop solar subsidies likely to be replaced by more community solar options. (San Antonio Report)

COMMENTARY:
• Florida should take advantage of its potential to attain 100% renewable energy by 2050 and protect residents’ health and security, write a pair of climate justice activists. (Palm Beach Post)
• A growing number of solar installations in historic North Carolina neighborhoods serves as proof that rooftop solar can coexist with historic preservation, writes an editorial board. (Greensboro News & Record)

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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.