GRID: A study commissioned by California’s grid operator finds a proposed Western day-ahead power market could save the region up to $1.2 billion and increase renewable power output by more than 1,800 GWh. (Utility Dive)

ALSO:
A multi-vehicle crash damages a utility pole in Colorado, leaving nearly 7,000 Denver-area households without power. (KDVR)
A southern California school district says it has experienced 27 power outages over the last year. (South Pasadena Review) 

OIL & GAS:
Montana conservationists applaud the Biden administration for halting noncompetitive federal oil and gas leases and increasing royalty rates. (Billings Gazette)
A Colorado city’s residents fight a proposed oil and gas drilling project, saying it threatens local air quality and a drinking-water reservoir. (CBS News Colorado)
The Biden administration makes $50 million available for plugging and cleaning up abandoned oil and gas wells on tribal lands. (news release)

UTILITIES:
New Mexico’s attorney general and consumer advocates urge the state Supreme Court to reverse its decision allowing a utility to delay issuing ratepayer rebates for savings realized from closing a coal power plant. (Associated Press)
A Colorado judge rejects Xcel Energy’s request to dismiss a class action lawsuit blaming the utility for sparking last year’s Marshall Fire that destroyed 1,000 homes. (Colorado Hometown Weekly) 

SOLAR:
Arizona regulators delay a vote on a proposed community solar program until early next year, putting the matter in the hands of a newly seated four-to-one Republican majority. (E&E News, subscription)
Washington state regulators seek public input on two 80 MW solar facilities proposed for Yakima County. (Yakima Herald-Republic)
Hawaiian Electric selects seven solar projects for its community-based solar program aimed at low- and moderate-income households. (PV Magazine)       

HYDROPOWER: Oregon developers propose retrofitting an existing dam with an 11 MW hydropower generator. (Mail Tribune) 

BIOFUELS: Washington State University researchers develop a more efficient method of converting human waste into methane fuel. (Spokesman-Review)   

HYDROGEN: A Texas company says it can produce hydrogen fuel by adding bacteria to residual hydrocarbons in spent oil and gas wells. (WIRED)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: A California port opens its first public electric heavy duty truck charging station. (Press-Telegram) 

CRITICAL MINERALS:
• The nation’s sole domestic lithium producer plans to double its Nevada mine’s production by 2024 to meet growing global demand. (NPR)
Wyoming’s energy authority awards a rare earth element mining company $4.4 million to develop a prototype ore-processing facility. (Casper Star-Tribune)

COMMENTARY: An editorial board lauds a Los Angeles municipal utility’s decision to end disconnections for nonpayment, but urges officials to help the poorest residents afford water and power. (Los Angeles Times)

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Jonathan P. Thompson

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.