Daily Digest

Florida Supreme Court hears solar choice arguments today

SOLAR:
• The Florida Supreme Court hears arguments today on proposed amendments to the state’s Constitution governing consumers’ access to solar energy. (Palm Beach Post)
• The utility-backed group opposing consumers’ access to solar in Florida is escalating its campaign to include Web ads due out soon. (Tampa Bay Times)
Kentucky is set for its first utility-scale solar system, owned by Kentucky Utilities and LG&E, as more homeowners go solar for their own power. (Louisville Courier-Journal)
A unit of Atlanta-based Southern Co. has announced, acquired or is building 19 solar, wind and biomass projects totaling about 1,300 megawatts of capacity. (Atlanta Business Chronicle)

CLIMATE:
Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Florida, consulted with the University of Florida on how its research can lessen climate impacts in Florida and Alaska. (The Gainesville Sun)
• In a new report, Citibank says investing in low-carbon energy would save the world $1.8 trillion through 2040 and not acting will cost an additional $44 trillion by 2060. (Climate Progress)

ENERGY STORAGE: The transition to storing energy from renewable systems risks swapping dependence on fossil fuels for dependence on metals critical to advanced batteries. (Christian Science Monitor)

SUSTAINABILITY: Atlanta extended its deadline until Sept. 21 for owners of private and municipal buildings of more than 50,000 sq. ft. to submit annual energy and water use data. (Atlanta Business Chronicle)

WIND: A new study offers hopes that bird mortality can be sharply reduced by locating wind farms far from nesting grounds. (The Washington Post)

CLEAN POWER PLAN: Legal challenges to the plan cannot begin until the Obama administration publishes it in the Federal Register, which it said won’t happen for two months. (The Hill)

UTILITIES:
• The refusal by Florida’s PSC to consider utility fuel hedging programs when it makes decisions on the rates they can charge is seen as a loss for consumers. (Utility Dive)
• Coal-fired generation at the Oglethorpe Power cooperative in Georgia has dropped 28% year-on-year through the first half of 2015 as it moves towards more natural gas and its share of the Vogtle nuclear plant. (Platts)

COAL: A bankruptcy judge cleared Patriot Coal to sell its remaining assets, including a mining complex in West Virginia. (The Wall Street Journal)

LIFE BEYOND COAL: Technology leaders in Kentucky envision construction of a 3,400-mile, high-speed fiber optic network to replace disappearing coal mining jobs. (Associated Press)

POWER LINES: Questions linger why Duke Energy declined to speak at a public hearing about its proposed high-voltage transmission line from the Asheville, N.C. area to Campobello, S.C. (Charlotte Business Journal)

NUCLEAR: Duke Energy is powering down its McGuire-2 reactor in North Carolina in preparation for planned refueling outage. (Platts)

PIPELINES: Even after Florida’s rejection of a permit for the proposed Sabal Trail natural gas pipeline, the WWALS Watershed Coalition has filed to oppose it. (Ocala Star Banner)

POLLUTION: The Obama administration’s plans to take only about a month to review its proposed reductions of allowable ozone pollution has energy lobbies fuming. (The Hill)

GASOLINE: Atlanta’s need for “boutique” grades of gasoline to help clean up its air is to end soon due to reductions in other sources of pollution. (Platts)

OIL & GAS:
Layoffs by oil service giant Baker Hughes hit Shreveport as part of the firm’s global job cuts prompted by low oil prices. (New Orleans Times-Picayune)
Louisiana oil patch’s woes are far from over as more layoffs, bankruptcies and mergers loom, said a trade group president. (The Advocate, Baton Rouge)

COMMENTARY:
The Wall Street Journal says the solar industry is “fleecing the American public.” 
• The right to clean air and water is equivalent to Americans’ rights to vote and to access public schools. (Southern Alliance for Clean Energy blog)

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