U.S. Energy News

Sunrun CEO: Residential solar market still “incredibly strong”

SOLAR: Despite a recent slowdown in the residential solar market, the CEO of California-based Sunrun insists that long-term growth is still strong and “trends are so in our favor.”(Utility Dive, Greentech Media)

ALSO:
• The country’s first grid-responsive solar farm in the Mojave Desert could help meet federal calls for grid stability. (Greentech Media)
• Alliant Energy plans a 5 MW solar array in Dubuque, which would be the largest in Iowa. (Toledo Chronicle)

***SPONSORED LINK: Network with 450-plus solar, storage and utility execs at the 4th Annual Midwest Solar Expo & Smart Energy Symposium, May 22-24 in Minneapolis. Gain the latest market insights and trends while networking with hundreds of industry leaders. Register today. ***

WIND: A North Carolina Republican who inserted a wind farm moratorium into a budget bill says the measure is needed to protect military communities(Southeast Energy News)

REGULATION: A federal court officially pauses a lawsuit over an Obama-era rule that limits methane emissions from oil and gas drilling operations on public lands, following a request from the Trump administration. (The Hill)

CAP-AND-TRADE: California’s governor says he will only sign a two-thirds vote to extend the state’s cap-and-trade program, which will be enough to protect it from legal challenges. (Los Angeles Times)

CLIMATE: People shouldn’t depend on removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere as a way to mitigate climate change, because it relies on technology that hasn’t been proven to work on a global scale, according to a new report. (Climate Central)

STORAGE: Utah-based Vivint Solar is teaming up with Mercedes-Benz to offer U.S. homeowners batteries to store their solar power. (New York Times)

EFFICIENCY: A Missouri utility is the latest to adopt inclining block rates, which create a larger financial incentive for customers to use less electricity. (Midwest Energy News)

OIL & GAS:
• Following orders from Colorado officials, an oil and gas company whose well caused a fatal home explosion sends 200 people to inspect wells near occupied structures. (Greeley Tribune)
• Colorado’s governor tells oil and gas regulators to accept a court ruling that requires them to protect public safety and the environment before allowing companies to drill, but the state’s attorney general independently filed an appeal to the Colorado Supreme Court. (Denver Post, Associated Press)

PIPELINES:
• With the Dakota Access Pipeline slated to begin operations in June, Native American tribes are dropping an appeal to stop the pipeline from being completed. (Associated Press)
• Pipeline opponents showed up to protest a meeting between the governor of Washington state and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who were discussing climate change and trade. (Canadian Press, Associated Press)

COAL: 
• Many residents in one eastern Kentucky county have been drinking bottled water for years, fearing contamination from nearby coal mines. (Christian Science Monitor)
• An Oklahoma coal company says Ohio-based FirstEnergy orchestrated a scheme to shed high-priced contracts. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

NUCLEAR:
• Westinghouse said in a letter Thursday it will not object to making public the details of its Summer nuclear project contract. (Charlotte Business Journal)
• FirstEnergy continues to push for state subsidies for its nuclear plants even after the Ohio House stopped hearings on legislation, saying its subsidiary will go bankrupt without the assistance. (Toledo Blade, Columbus Dispatch)

GRID: Plans for an 80-mile electrical transmission line between Oregon and Washington are canceled due to rising costs. (Associated Press)

***SPONSORED LINK: Smart Cities Technologies in Wisconsin is taking place on June 6 in Milwaukee. Organized by the Midwest Energy Research Consortium and the City of Milwaukee, this workshop will explore how cities like Milwaukee are adopting Smart Cities Technologies. Register before June 2. ***

POLITICS:
• Senators grill Trump’s nominee for second-in-command at the Department of the Interior, David Berhardt, who is a long-time D.C. lobbyist with ties to the oil and gas industry. (Huffington Post, ThinkProgress)
• Energy Department officials confirm reports that a 2018 Trump administration budget aims to cut funding for the department’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy by roughly 70 percent. (Washington Post)

COMMENTARY: A California utility’s grid modernization proposal is extremely costly and would not take full advantage of distributed energy, according to officials from two top solar groups. (Utility Dive)

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