U.S. Energy News

Report: Expiring federal tax incentives could hurt EV market

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: The upcoming expiration of federal tax incentives “is likely to crash” the electric vehicle market, according to a new report. (Motley Fool)

SOLAR:
• With two-thirds of the world’s solar production capacity, China has unprecedented power over the U.S. solar industry. (New York Times)
• Duke Energy may take a controversial solar proposal – which would replace North Carolina’s current system of buying and financing solar power with a bidding process run by utilities – to state lawmakers for approval. (Charlotte Business Journal)
• Toyota installs half an acre of solar panels at a plant in San Antonio, Texas, which is expected to save the company about $15,000 a year. (San Antonio Business Journal)

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STORAGE: Illinois’ largest utility is deploying medium-sized batteries at the neighborhood level as part of a pilot project. (Midwest Energy News)

NUCLEAR:
• Why the Trump administration is worried that Chinese investors could buy Westinghouse Electric. (New York Times)
• Opponents are blasting a proposal to subsidize two nuclear plants in Ohio. (Columbus Business First)

COAL:
• U.S. coal use fell for the third year in a row in 2016, dropping by 9 percent, even as the country consumed more energy overall, according to a recent report. (Climate Central)
• A bill that lessens a water quality restriction for coal mines is approved by the West Virginia House. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

OIL & GAS: The Trump administration is preparing an executive order that could expand offshore drilling in the Arctic Ocean as well as the Atlantic Ocean, where there has been no activity since the early 1980s. (Washington Post)

PIPELINES: New York’s Department of Environmental Conservation blocks a 97-mile pipeline project from moving forward. (WIVB)

POLLUTION: Hilcorp Alaska appears to have had its third underwater pipeline leak since December in Alaska’s Cook Inlet, which is home to endangered beluga whales. (InsideClimate News)

POLICY:
• Lawmakers in Oregon are considering a “climate test” bill that would require proposed fossil fuel projects to undergo a review to calculate their climate impact. (ThinkProgress)
• The EPA is seeking to postpone a case involving an Obama-era rule to limit smog, raising questions over whether the Trump administration will defend the policy. (Washington Post)

UTILITIES: Power producer NRG, which has set aggressive goals to reduce its CO2 emissions, is battling internally with two directors who want to sell off some of the company’s renewable energy projects. (New York Times)

GRID: An increase in new natural gas plants could cause distressed power prices for the PJM Interconnection and lead to a wave of coal plant retirements, according to a recent analysis. (Utility Dive)

COMMENTARY:
• Eliminating the Clean Power Plan while cutting renewable energy research sends a clear signal that the Trump administration is protecting its friends in the fossil fuel industry, says the Denver Post editorial board.
• EPA staffers are demoralized by the Trump administration and fearful of speaking out, says a Washington Post columnist.
• Building more pipelines is good for the U.S. economy and will make the country more secure, according to two guest columnists for the Billings Gazette.

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