Daily Digest

Study confirms fracking fluids contaminated West Virginia waterway

FRACKING: A new U.S. Geological Survey study confirms a West Virginia site for dumping drilling fluids contaminated Wolf Creek, a source for drinking water. (Climate Progress)

OIL & GAS:
• The EPA is set to issue today the first federal standards aimed at curbing methane emissions. (Wall Street Journal)
• A Houston firm with all of its engineers based in Durham, North Carolina claim they’ve found a way with big data to save the industry billions of dollars. (Triangle Business Journal)

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SOLAR:
• A Florida homeowner perseveres in his bid to unplug his solar-powered home from the local utility, which is against the law there. (WFTV)
• Utilities raised $8.5 million in April to promote a constitutional amendment widely viewed as inhibiting the growth of rooftop solar in Florida. (Jacksonville Business Journal)
Tallahassee, Florida joins other jurisdictions seeking to deploy large solar systems at their airports. (WCTV)
• North Carolina environmental officials reject a report by regulators that downplayed criticism of efforts to reduce water pollution using floating, solar-powered, “mixers.” (WRAL)

COAL ASH:
Georgia environmental officials weigh rules to keep toxic coal ash from polluting nearby waterways. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
• North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory and state lawmakers today are to release a plan for reconstituting an oversight commission. (Raleigh News & Observer)

NATURAL GAS: An environmental group in North Carolina considers appealing a $10 million bond required if it continues challenging the speedy approval of a new natural gas-fired power plant sought by Duke Energy. (Charlotte Business Journal)

BLANKENSHIP TRIAL: Former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship today is due to report to a California federal prison to begin serving his one-year sentence. (Associated Press)

UTILITIES: A survey reflects continued declining customer satisfaction with Duke Energy. (Charlotte Observer)

PIPELINES:
• A county judge in Virginia rules developers of the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline gave “legally insufficient” survey notices to 37 landowners. (The Lynchburg News & Advance)
• Protesters in Columbia, South Carolina greet Dominion shareholders and executives gathering for the company’s annual meeting. (The State)

OFFSHORE DRILLING: An acoustics expert questions whether seismic surveys off the North Carolina coast can be done without harming marine life or interfering with fishing. (Coastal Review Online)

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TECHNOLOGY: The North Carolina Biotech Center is among those to receive a portion of $10 million earmarked for clean energy research. (U.S. Dept. of Agriculture)

COMMENTARY:
• Without new guarantees, A University of West Virginia law professor says taxpayers will end up paying to clean up lands abandoned after mining coal. (The Conversation)
• Your battery-powered electric vehicle is only as clean as your electricity supplier. (Scientific American)
• North Carolina needs a commission with teeth to oversee the management and disposal of coal ash. (Fayetteville Observer)
• Appalachian Power should be lauded for proposing a shrewd move from coal toward cleaner energy. (Natural Resources Defense Council)

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