OIL & GAS: Wyoming officials plan to use $25 million in federal funds to plug and reclaim the state’s remaining 1,500 orphaned oil and gas wells. (Cowboy State Daily)

ALSO:
A Colorado county approves 21 proposed oil and gas wells, exempting them from the state’s required 2,000-foot setback from homes. (Post-Independent)
A ruptured generator fuel tank spills thousands of gallons of diesel into a pond at a northern California park, requiring the rescue of at least five birds. (CBS Sacramento)

ELECTRIFICATION: Marin County, California’s supervisors vote unanimously to require new residential and commercial construction be all electric beginning Jan. 1. (Marin Independent Journal) 

EFFICIENCY: Idaho officials table a proposal to slash energy efficiency regulations from the state building codes at least until February. (Boise State Public Radio)

BIOFUELS:
United Airlines plans to invest up to $37.5 million into a proposed biofuel refinery near the Columbia River in Oregon even though the state recently revoked and denied key permits for the facility. (OPB)
Arizona State University researchers find the U.S. aviation sector’s fuel demand could be met entirely by biofuels produced from a drought-tolerant grass planted on existing marginal agricultural land. (news release)

GEOTHERMAL: An environmental group calls on federal officials to extend endangered species protections to a rare Nevada fish, potentially affecting proposed geothermal developments. (news release)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Washington state officials race to develop a plan to meet Gov. Jay Inslee’s ban on new gasoline-powered car sales by 2035. (RTO Insider, subscription)

BATTERIES:
Panasonic Corp says it will buy remanufactured battery cathode material from a Nevada electric vehicle battery recycling company beginning in 2025. (Reuters)
• Idaho researchers propose establishing a central data repository that would use artificial intelligence to speed battery technology development. (news release) 

SOLAR:
• Colorado researchers and farmers collaborate to improve ways to combine agriculture and solar installations, also known as agrivoltaics. (Canary Media)
A renewable energy firm expects to begin construction on its proposed 250 MW solar project in southern Arizona in 2024. (news release)
Construction begins on a 2 MW solar-plus-storage microgrid that will provide power to a biofuel refinery in northern California. (news release)

COAL:
• Arizona researchers find planned coal plant retirements would free up substantial volumes of water now used for cooling and steam generation along the drought-diminished Colorado River. (Casper Star-Tribune)
Montana regulators say Peabody Energy has completed reclamation of the Big Sky Coal Mine near Colstrip and will return the site to ranching and agricultural use. (news release)

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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.