Daily Digest

Florida sets vote on renewable energy tax break for businesses

RENEWABLES: A proposed amendment to the Florida Constitution that would give tax breaks to businesses for installing solar panels is set for the statewide ballot in August. (Miami Herald)

SOLAR: Activists protest changes proposed by the Jacksonville Electric Authority to reduce credits for surplus power from rooftop systems. (Folio Weekly, Florida Politics)

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COAL ASH:
• Duke Energy appeals a $6.6 million state fine for the utility’s massive 2014 ash spill into the Dan River. (Charlotte Observer)
• Dominion Virginia Power and environmental groups reach an agreement over its disposal of wastewater into the James River. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
• Maryland says it will keep fighting Dominion Virginia Power over how it disposes of wastewater into the Potomac River. (The Washington Post)

CLEAN POWER PLAN:
• Two Arkansas agencies agree to halt planning to comply with the plan, citing the Supreme Court’s stay. (Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)
West Virginia’s environmental chief urges the U.S. Senate to focus on energy solutions, without complying expressly with the plan. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

LIGHTING: North Carolina-based innovator Cree is working with builders, local officials and high school students to install LED bulbs at the North Carolina Zoo. (Proud Green Building)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: A Virginia company strives to standardize recharging batteries in EVs. (WVTF Radio)

UTILITIES:
Two Florida mayors urge Republican presidential candidates to address rising sea levels’ impact on Florida’s coastlines in tonight’s debate. (Miami Herald)
• West Virginia lawmakers are close to passing a bill that would allow utilities to charge ratepayers extra for retrofitting coal-fired generators. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)
Rural co-ops in North Carolina and elsewhere move to improve energy efficiency with on-bill financing. (Environmental Defense Fund)
Kentucky regulators pass on the option to approve or reject Duke Energy’s proposed acquisition of Piedmont Natural Gas. (Charlotte Business Journal)

POWER GRID:
Natural gas is set to surpass coal – for good – in 2016 as the top U.S. power source. (Platts)
• The PJM Interconnection advances newly proposed wholesale power supply rules. (Platts)

COAL:
• Lawmakers ask federal auditors to examine how companies may be dodging clean-up costs of shuttered mines with self-bonding permission. (Reuters)
West Virginia lawmakers shelve, for this year, legislation to cut severance taxes for the coal and natural gas industries. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)
• A new bill in Kentucky would help unemployed miners find jobs while assisting low-income families with their utility bills. (Middlesboro Daily News)
• Legislation advancing in Kentucky would eliminate state mine inspections but not save it any money. (WKYU Public Radio)

COMMENTARY:
• An editorial in North Carolina calls for better state water quality standards and disclosure practices in dealing with coal ash disposal. (Fayetteville Observer)
• An agreement reached in Virginia over the management of coal ash wastewater illuminates the flaws in the state’s regulations. (Southern Environmental Law Center)
• A North Carolina philanthropist must overcome tall hurdles to persuade conservatives to back clean energy. (The Energy Fix)
• A North Carolina entrepreneur calls clean energy the biggest new business opportunity of our time. (Independent Weekly)

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