Daily Digest

Virginia Supreme Court ruling upholds state’s pipeline surveying law

PIPELINES: The Virginia Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Thursday to uphold a controversial state law that allows natural gas companies to survey private property for a possible pipeline route without an owner’s consent. (Roanoke Times)

CLIMATE POLICY: As Virginia considers ways to cut carbon emissions, including the possibility of joining a regional cap-and-trade system, Dominion Energy has outlined its terms for supporting such a move. (Southeast Energy News)

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UTILITIES:
• Despite losses related to the Kemper and Vogtle projects, compensation for some of Southern Company’s top executives increased by more than one-third. (Utility Dive)
• The Florida Public Service Commission voted unanimously and without discussion on Thursday to allow Florida Power & Light to bypass a required bid process to upgrade a natural gas plant. (Sun Sentinel)

OIL & GAS:
• The Trump administration announced on Thursday its first offshore oil and gas lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico, reducing royalty rates. (Reuters)
• A New Orleans city council member put plans on hold Thursday to sue oil and gas companies for damaging wetlands that protect the city from storm surges. (Times-Picayune)

COAL ASH:
• The Tennessee Valley Authority found high levels of arsenic and other toxins in groundwater near Memphis where thousands of tons of coal ash are stored. (Commercial Appeal)
• Environmental groups have filed a lawsuit against a Kentucky Utilities power plant for illegally releasing coal ash pollutants into a recreational lake. (Associated Press)

COAL:
• Spikes in coal production are predicted to not last long-term. (West Virginia Public Broadcasting)
• More liens have been filed against West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice’s family-owned coal business for unpaid state taxes. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

NUCLEAR: Senators continue efforts to extend nuclear production tax credits as the fate of the long-delayed and over-budget Summer and Vogtle projects still remains uncertain. (E&E News)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES:
• The electric car company created by Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe did not generate the 350 jobs promised and was down to 10 employees as of early 2017. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
• Electric vehicle advocates want to bring back Georgia’s tax credit. (Utility Drive)

PACE: A new PACE financing program is launching in Florida with safeguards to address concerns about consumer protection. (Sun Sentinel)

COMMENTARY:
• North Carolina health and environmental officials cannot seem to agree on safe drinking water standards. (Progressive Pulse)
• Working with the oil and gas industry is key to preserving Louisiana’s economic and coastal future. (Times-Picayune)

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