Daily Digest

Erin Brockovich joins North Carolina coal ash fight

SOLAR: A petition drive seeks to establish ‘solar rights’ for Virginia residents and unleash fresh voices in the state’s capital. (Southeast Energy News)

ALSO:
• The committee backed by Florida utilities promoting the solar Amendment 1 on the state’s Nov. 8 ballot raises almost $3 million over two days bringing its total raised to more than $18 million. (SaintPetersBlog)
• Advocates point to the upside potential for solar in West Virginia. (The Exponent Telegram)
• Despite hurdles, the solar industry in Florida is growing. (WFTS)
• A flea market in coastal South Carolina is among the latest adopters there of roof-mounted solar panels. (The Post and Courier)

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COAL ASH: California activist Erin Brockovich lends her name to the push for safe drinking water from wells near ash ponds in North Carolina. (WRAL)

UTILITIES: Orlando, Florida faces a decision whether to shut an aging coal-fired power plant that has been the backbone of its generation portfolio. (Orlando Sentinel)

VW EMISSIONS SCANDAL: West Virginia’s Attorney General seeks outside legal help for its lawsuit against Volkswagen. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

BLANKENSHIP CONVICTION: Federal prosecutors urge an appeals court to uphold the conviction of former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship for a mine safety conspiracy. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

CLIMATE: Connecting the dots between climate change and the devastating floods in Louisiana. (Washington Post)

OIL & GAS: Engineers move to plug a 7,000-foot-deep well in West Virginia drilled in 1959 that has been oozing oil after a 1985 flood. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

COAL:
• Despite industry losses, one updated measure signals a relatively high number of “active” mines in Kentucky. (WFPL Public Radio)
• A new documentary spotlights the late Kentucky activist Harry Caudill. (Lexington Herald-Leader)
• Scores of displaced miners show up at a two-day job fair in Beckley, West Virginia for jobs hundreds of miles away. (Beckley Register-Herald)
Alpha Natural Resources hopes its relocation from Virginia to Kingsport, Tennessee helps it return to profitability. (Kingsport TimesNews)

HYDROPOWER: Small dams in several states hold potential for generating electricity. (Circle of Blue)

POLITICS:
• A leading opponent of renewable energy drops out of his North Carolina House re-election race. (Associated Press)
• Environmentalists are split over Jay Faison and his push for “conservative clean energy.” (Grist)

PIPELINES: Activists plan a protest this Thursday against the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. (The News Virginian)

WEST VIRGINIA: A new report by the state’s Center for Energy and Sustainable Development urges policymakers to focus on resources other than coal. (West Virginia Record)

TECHNOLOGY: A New York firm confirms it is buying North Carolina-based smart-meter firm Sensus for about $1.7 billion. (Triangle Business Journal)

COMMENTARY:
Florida and Tennessee are among the six best states for owning a Tesla. (CleanTechnica)
• Tap into more – not less – wind energy in eastern North Carolina. (Raleigh News & Observer)
• Are North Carolinians getting the truth on coal-ash leaks into well water? (Wilmington StarNews)
• A vote for Florida’s solar Amendment 4 Aug. 30 should be an easy one. (Florida Today)

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