Daily Digest

North Carolina governor signs solar bill, issues executive order supporting wind

RENEWABLES: North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper signed into law on Thursday legislation to promote solar energy and also issued an executive order to encourage wind power despite a controversial moratorium included in the bill. (News & Observer)

ALSO: Proponents of wind energy hope developers won’t follow through with threats to suspend projects in North Carolina following the state’s new moratorium law. (Triangle Business Journal)

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NUCLEAR:
• Santee Cooper and SCE&G will accept nearly $2.2 billion from Toshiba to defray costs of the over-budget, long-delayed Summer nuclear expansion, though the project’s completion is still not certain. (The State, Charlotte Business Journal)
• Meanwhile, chief contractor and Toshiba subsidiary Westinghouse Electric has asked for an extra three months to file a reorganization plan after filing for bankruptcy in March. (Power Source)
• A look at Virginia’s uncertain nuclear power future. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

PIPELINES:
• West Virginians and Virginians filed a federal lawsuit – the second in as many months – against the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)
• Opponents of the Mountain Valley Pipeline project hope they can block its construction based on constitutional grounds. (WVTF)

WIND: Southwestern Electric Power of Arkansas plans to buy a 70 percent stake in the country’s largest wind farm – a project that signals continued growth for renewables even under the Trump administration. (Arkansas Business Journal, Washington Post)

COAL: Construction at the Kemper “clean coal” plant is suspended until settlement talks have concluded, with the Mississippi Public Service Commissioner saying, “The Kemper story is not over, but one way or another it is nearing the end.” (WLOX)

OIL & GAS:
• A report shows a wetland restoration project in Louisiana was altered to benefit oil and gas exploration. (Times-Picayune)
• A new poll shows North Carolina residents are concerned about the environmental and economic risks of the federal government’s plan to drill for oil and natural gas off the state’s coast. (Coastal Review Online)

EFFICIENCY:
• Duke Energy will install 36 electric power outlets at a North Carolina distribution center to reduce carbon emissions by keeping tractor-trailer rigs cooled without running their engines. (Charlotte Business Journal)
• More than 300 government vehicles in Virginia have switched to alternative fuels. (WRIC)

COMMENTARY: North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper softened the blow of the 18-month wind farm moratorium with an executive order, but he is trying to have his cake and eat it, too. (Progressive Pulse)

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