Daily Digest

Florida town aims to become completely solar-powered

SOLAR: Construction begins on a southwest Florida community aiming to be the first completely solar-powered town in the U.S. for its 19,000 residents. (Curbed / Fort Myers News-Press)

ALSO:
• A second large-scale solar farm is planned in Accomack County, Virginia, already the site of a solar system whose power is earmarked for Amazon Web Services. (Delmarva Now)
• A proposed solar farm in Moore County, North Carolina is delayed until a property grants permission for a sediment basin. (The Pilot)

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NUCLEAR: Public hearings underway could determine whether Georgia Power succeeds in pursuing more reactors and how they are paid for. (The Augusta Chronicle)

EFFICIENCY:
Americans used less and wasted less energy in 2015 compared to 2014. (Utility Dive)
Demand for electricity is flattening in Elizabethton, Tennessee. (Johnson City Press)
• A nonprofit initiative works to reduce energy bills for Memphis residents who reportedly have some of the highest bills in the country relative to their income. (Southern Alliance for Clean Energy)

PIPELINES:
• Dominion delays the start of construction of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline to 2017. (WSET)
• A citizens summit in Virginia organizes efforts to block the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley pipelines. (The News-Virginian)
• A celebrated activist rallies opponents of the Mountain Valley Pipeline. (The Roanoke Times)

COAL ASH: Suspicions linger in North Carolina over feared links to illnesses.  (Carolina Public Press)

UTILITIES:
• The TVA says its fuel costs are the lowest since it began calculating them in 2006. (The News Courier)
Utilities in West Virginia reject calls for public hearings over their long-term power needs. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

FRACKING: West Virginia and other states should use severance taxes for diversifying their economies, new reports say. (The Dominion Post)

OIL & GAS:
• Federal prosecutors say an oil company has agreed to pay $715,000 in fines for an oil spill in a central Louisiana river basin. (New Orleans Times-Picayune)
Layoffs have stripped Louisiana of about 15,000 jobs during the past 12 months. (Baton Rouge Advocate)

NATURAL GAS:
• Louisiana is seeing new jobs created by the exports of liquefied natural gas from export terminals there. (Houston Chronicle)
• West Virginia officials discuss a long-term natural gas partnership with Japanese business leaders. (West Virginia MetroNews)

COAL:
• West Virginia opposes bankrupt Alpha Natural Resources’ plan over how the sale of its core assets undermines a projected $1 billion cleanup obligation. (Reuters)
• The race over how to replace coal in Appalachia with other economic drivers draws heightened interest. (Associated Press)
Kentucky utilities weigh the bottom-line benefit of increasingly lower-cost coal due to rising supplies. (Platts)

POLICY: Both of West Virginia’s senators pin hopes on proposals they authored in the Senate-passed energy bill, including one to improve pipeline permitting. (The Register-Herald)

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VOLKSWAGEN SCANDAL: VW reported a $4.1 billion net loss for 2015 largely due to how technicians at its Tennessee plant cheated diesel emissions tests. (Greenwire)

COMMENTARY:
• The head of the Kentucky Coal Association takes issue with a newspaper’s reporting on mining safety issues. (Lexington Herald-Leader)
Virginians should support Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s and other efforts to mitigate climate change. (The Virginian-Pilot)

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