Daily Digest

Coal ash showdown escalates in North Carolina

COAL ASH:
• Democratic leaders in North Carolina call for an independent probe of Gov. McCrory’s involvement in rescinding “do not drink” orders for residents near ash ponds. (Raleigh News & Observer)
• North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory says there’s a “well-coordinated campaign by a Super PAC” to discredit his administration’s handling of coal ash challenges. (WDTV)

ALSO:
• For closing North Carolina’s coal ash ponds, one size doesn’t fit all. (Southeast Energy News)
• Kentucky regulators approve plans totaling nearly $1 billion for the state’s two largest utilities to close and cap ash ponds. (Associated Press)

NUCLEAR:
• Utilities in Florida, North Carolina and Virginia are being allowed to bill customers for building reactors long before they start up. (Bloomberg)
• A consortium of nuclear energy interests and a research center launch a joint effort to draw more research dollars and jobs to Virginia. (Virginia Business)

COAL: Southern Co. pushes back the projected start date for its Kemper “clean coal” plant a month to October 31 and adds another $43 million to its price tag. (SunHerald)

SOLAR:
• With new data from Dominion North Carolina, the state is expected to set another annual record for total megawatts of installed solar systems. (Charlotte Business Journal)
• A divided City Council in Chesapeake, Virginia is to consider for a second time a proposed solar farm there. (Virginian-Pilot)
• A NASCAR legend turns his attention to solar-powered golf carts for his newly acquired North Carolina country club. (World Golf)
• A Boston-based solar developer launches a loan product in the Carolinas. (PV-Tech)

FRACKING: As a review panel begins an assessment, community and social justice activists in Virginia call for stronger rules to govern fracking. (Augusta Free Press)

MICROGRIDS: A south Florida development is part of a growing number of communities developing microgrids. (The Guardian)

UTILITIES:
• Customers of Kentucky Utilities will pay extra each month to cover environmental upgrades at its power plants under a settlement with regulators. (Lexington Herald-Leader)
• A power outage that grounded hundreds of Delta Air Lines flights was internal and not a part of Georgia Power’s distribution network, the utility said. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: EV maker GreenTech Automotive misses a scheduled debt payment to Mississippi. (Associated Press)

COMMENTARY:
• The credentials of the North Carolina toxicologist at the center of the latest coal ash controversy are unassailable. (Winston-Salem Journal)
County officials in Virginia are right to be wary of how fracking regulations are updated. (Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star)
Appalachian Power in Virginia is making a shrewd move to cleaner power sources. (The Roanoke Times)
• What if coal workers were retrained for jobs in the solar industry? (Harvard Business Review)

CORRECTION: A story in yesterday’s digest about a Marine base shifting from coal to cleaner sources of power misstated its location; it is in North Carolina.

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