Daily Digest

A first: U.S. to stream today’s Gulf oil lease sale via the internet

OIL & GAS: The federal government says its broadcasting today for the first time a Gulf of Mexico lease sale in New Orleans live via the internet as protestors call for halting all drilling there. (Associated Press)

OFFSHORE DRILLING: Animated maps from a conservation group illustrate risks to marine life from seismic testing. (Southeast Energy News)

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NUCLEAR:
• Southern Co.’s nuclear unit signs a memorandum of understanding with a technology company to develop next-generation reactors. (EnergyWire)
• An adjunct professor at North Carolina State University addresses the public’s perception of nuclear energy. (Daily Tarheel)
Drone videos capture recent progress of the two reactors under construction at Plant Vogtle in Georgia. (Nuclear Street)

SOLAR:
• Citing Florida as an example, the consumer advocacy group Public Citizen urges the Federal Trade Commission to ban certain activities of companies that lease solar systems. (Daily Caller News Foundation)
• Here is how the Public Utilities Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 is helping boost utility scale solar in North Carolina. (Solar Industry)
• An installer applies to build a third solar system in a North Carolina county. (Winston-Salem Journal)
• Onslow County reportedly is leading all counties in North Carolina in the amount of solar capacity installed. (WNCT)

COAL ASH:
• An environmental group claims Duke Energy is overestimating the cost to clean up its ash to discourage excavating it from leaking pits, court filings show. (Salisbury Post)
• An environmental group tells residents of Lee County, North Carolina it’s not abandoning them despite its rejection of $6,000 from the county to buy them water filters. (Fayetteville Observer)

PIPELINES: Dominion unveils a simulation of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline’s visual impact on a Virginia county. (Nelson County Times)

BATTERIES: A California company agrees to work with North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University to boost its development of battery technology. (AltEnergyMag.com)

HYDROPOWER: Duke Energy takes its case for a 50-year extension of a license to manage a power plant on the Catawba River to a federal appeals court. (Charlotte Observer)

GRID: Two Virginia utilities are among those proposing a broad reassessment of a regional transmission grid’s program to sell capacity rights. (Utility Dive / RTO Insider)

BIOENERGY:
• Blue Sphere Corp. signs options to purchase two sites in Eastern North Carolina where it plans to build swine-waste-to-energy plants. (Charlotte Business Journal)
• The biomass industry pushes for federal incentives to make it more attractive to burn wood waste for generating electricity. (Climate Central)

EFFICIENCY: Florida and West Virginia are among states to receive Department of Energy funding to advance clean energy programs. (EIN Newsdesk)

UTILITIES:
• Regulators authorize Dominion Virginia Power to bury certain power lines underground where it says reliability is lagging and boost rates accordingly. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
• A Memphis city councilman adds his voice to those who oppose a plan by the TVA to cool water for a new gas plant under construction there. (Memphis Flyer)

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COAL: Federal officials today are to unveil “significant” investments in Appalachian communities hit hard by layoffs in the coal industry. (Associated Press)

COMMENTARY:
• It is helpful to see how various officials have backed off their support of drilling off Virginia’s coast. (The Virginian-Pilot)
• The head of Mississippi’s economic development authority spotlights the growing role of wood and wood waste in generating electricity. (SunHerald)
• The TVA is ignoring public concerns about capping coal ash ponds. (Knoxville News Sentinel)
• Commissioners in King George County, Virginia are right to impose strict limits on fracking. (Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star)

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