Daily Digest

Federal review of gas pipeline project finds limited environmental impact

PIPELINES: Federal regulators’ final environmental review for the Mountain Valley Pipeline through West Virginia and Virginia is mostly favorable for developers, though the project is opposed by many environmental groups and landowners. (Associated Press)

ALSO:
• An official under Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe wrote a letter to Dominion Energy saying the state will not base decisions related to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline “on requests or suggestions from an applicant.” (Roanoke Times)
• Virginia’s Democratic candidate for governor, Ralph Northam — who has not come out in favor or against the pipelines — faces pressure from activists. (Roanoke Times)

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NUCLEAR:
• SCE&G and Santee Cooper are expected to continue their review of the V.C. Summer nuclear expansion project beyond today’s deadline that was set after the main contractor, Westinghouse, filed for bankruptcy. (The State)
• The owners of the Summer nuclear plant believed a detailed construction schedule was the basis for the project’s timing and cost, but have learned the documentation doesn’t exist. (Charleston Post and Courier)
• Environmental groups are challenging TVA’s proposal to use a Tennessee nuclear site abandoned in the 1970s to develop new small modular reactors, saying they “are very concerned that history is once again repeating itself.” (Associated Press)
The University of Arkansas is nearly complete cleaning up an old nuclear reactor, but estimates it will cost another $10.1 million to finish the job. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)

EFFICIENCY: Mississippi and Louisiana are following Arkansas’s energy efficiency programs, which show that regulations can benefit ratepayers and utilities while creating new energy efficiency jobs. (Southeast Energy News)

SOLAR: After being acquired by Tesla, SolarCity is closing its installation expansion in South Carolina less than a year after it opened, ending one of its first pushes into the Southeast. (Charleston Post and Courier)

RENEWABLE ENERGY: A group of businesses focused on renewable energy wants Virginia’s gubernatorial candidates to embrace the “transformational change” in the state’s energy consumption and production. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

CLIMATE CHANGE:
• The mayor of New Orleans said at the annual U.S. Conferences of Mayors meeting that national policy on climate change will emerge from U.S. cities working to reduce emissions and become more resilient to rising sea levels. (Associated Press)
As Miami Beach hosts the annual U.S. Conferences of Mayors, its mayor uses the event to make the city the “poster child” for sea-level rise and him as the champion fighting it. (Miami Herald)

OIL AND GAS: As the Trump administration restarts a process this month that could lead to seismic tests in the Atlantic, environmentalists and those in the oil industry have conflicting responses. (Virginian-Pilot)

POLITICS: A West Virginia Republican senator praises President Trump’s energy proposals. (Washington Examiner)

COAL: The Trump administration is seeking opportunities for using U.S. energy abroad by undoing a ban on financing coal plants overseas, which would affect Appalachia. (Bloomberg)

HYDROELECTRIC: A city in West Virginia has filed a multimillion-dollar lawsuit against an insurance company over its denial of a claim from the city’s hydroelectric plant. (Wheeling News-Register)

COMMENTARY: A clean-energy analyst says Mississippi regulators are saying that even “clean coal” is not the best electricity source after its announcement that ratepayers will not pay for the Kemper plant. (The Hill)

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