Daily Digest

More than 7.3 million without power as utilities respond to outages caused by Irma

HURRICANE IRMA: More than 7.3 million customers in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Alabama were without power on Monday, while fuel prices fell as Hurricane Irma is likely to reduce demand for gasoline and diesel. (Reuters)

ALSO:
• Florida Power & Light on Monday began responding to power outages across the state as the White House urged patience, saying power could be out for weeks. (South Florida Business Journal, McClatchy)
• U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson of Florida called for the Department of Energy to create a separate gasoline supply reserve for his state following Hurricane Irma. (SaintPetersBlog)
• Regulators issue a waiver for Florida electricity companies to violate clean air and water standards without penalty for the next two weeks as they maintain and restore power. (Associated Press)
Florida Power & Light said customers were not affected by a partial shutdown of its Turkey Point nuclear power plant in the wake of Hurricane Irma. (Treasure Coast Palm)
Nearly half of Georgia Power’s customers had lost power Monday due to Hurricane Irma. (Atlanta Business Chronicle)

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CLIMATE:
• Following back-to-back hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the White House would not answer questions on Monday about whether climate change may have been a factor. (ABC)
Meanwhile, Pope Francis criticized climate change skeptics following the storms, saying there is a moral duty to take action. (Associated Press)

NATURAL GAS: The U.S. Supreme Court is being asked to review a West Virginia Supreme Court justice’s role in a natural gas royalty case that could have had significant financial implications for energy companies in which her husband owned stock. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

SOLAR: Although North Carolina saw significant solar development in the second quarter, the state is not matching Texas and California. (Charlotte Business Journal, subscription)

UTILITIES: The West Virginia Public Service Commission plans to hold a third public hearing today on the proposed acquisition of the coal-fired Pleasants Power Station by Mon Power and Potomac Edison. (WAJR)

POLITICS: Hillary Clinton discusses in an interview a campaign event in West Virginia’s coal country that she believes significantly affected her presidential run. (NPR)

COMMENTARY:
• Two North Carolina state lawmakers — a Republican and a Democrat — say renewable energy is an economic issue, not a partisan one, citing a new solar and wind law in the state. (Southeast Energy News)
• A columnist says what Florida Gov. Rick Scott has done to undo climate mitigation in Florida while in office, President Trump has begun to do nationally. (Washington Post)
A columnist says North Carolina may not be as competitive as it could be for a new Amazon headquarters location because of some state lawmakers’ recent efforts to curb renewable energy efforts there. (News & Record)
A Virginia Tech professor says the psychological impact of the Mountain Valley Pipeline has not been given much attention, but “it is a crisis and it’s causing severe distress.” (Roanoke Times)
A guest columnist questions why West Virginia’s Gov. Jim Justice — who made his fortune in the coal industry — does not seem outraged that the federal government canceled a study on the health impacts of mining. (Charleston Mail-Gazette)
A newspaper editorial says Republican lawmakers are ignoring the climate threat and putting Americans at risk as a result. (Lexington Herald Leader)

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