Energy Report

A bimonthly digest of regional energy news

Pipelines Clear Hurdles, Face Resistance

December 6, 2017 While the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast pipelines have obtained approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, they still face widespread opposition.

Chinese Company Signs 20-Year West Virginia Gas Deal

December 5, 2017 China Energy Investment Corp., Ltd., signed a 20-year, $83.7 billion deal to invest in shale gas and chemical manufacturing in West Virginia, raising questions about long-term implications.

Courts Confirm Citizen Rights to Inspect Mines

December 5, 2017 A federal district court in Virginia confirmed that citizens have the right to accompany mine inspections under federal and state law.

New N.C. Policies Threaten Solar Investments

December 5, 2017 A new rule ordered by the North Carolina Utilities Commission has garnered praise from Duke Energy, while solar advocates fear it may harm the economic viability of solar projects.

Duke Energy, Professors Collaborate in “Independent” Studies

December 5, 2017 An investigation by WBTV unveiled possible collusion between Duke Energy and two University of North Carolina at Charlotte professors studying the impact of Duke's coal ash ponds.

Federal Agency Approves Dam Projects Over Objections

December 5, 2017 The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued licenses for two West Virginia hydropower projects in September despite concerns from the state's Department of Environmental Protection.

Construction Halted on Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline

December 5, 2017 Environmental groups and an order of nuns are challenging the controversial pipeline in Pennsylvania.

Federal Grant Seeks to Extract Elements from Coal Byproducts

December 5, 2017 University researchers were awarded $6 million to expand a project focused on extracting rare earth elements from coal byproducts.

Opposition to Proposed Tennessee Mountaintop Removal Mine

October 11, 2017 Kopper Glo Mining is seeking a second permit to release pollution from its nearly 1,500-acre proposed Claiborne County, Tenn., strip mine into public waterways. Attendees at a public hearing voiced a number of concerns.

Pipelines Face Continued Challenges

October 11, 2017 Citizen and environmental groups continue to challenge the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline and Mountain Valley Pipeline as the companies behind the pipelines push for rushed decisions.

Regional Coal Ash News: Toxic Cleanup, Legal Woes and EPA Changes

October 11, 2017 Over two dozen workers who helped clean up the December 2008 TVA coal ash disaster have died, and surviving workers and family members are suing. Duke Energy faces legal trouble for withholding dam safety information. The EPA is being challenged for retracting a 30-day public comment extension on coal ash guidelines.

Court Prevents County From Banning Fracking Wastewater

October 11, 2017 A federal appeals court upheld a lower court's decision to block Fayette County, W.Va., from banning the disposal of fracking waste in the county on the grounds that fracking waste disposal is governed by the state.

White House Halts Review of Mountaintop Removal Health Impacts

October 11, 2017 In August, the U.S. Dept. of the Interior ordered the National Academy of Sciences to halt a two-year review of the human health impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining. The review's budget was less than 1 percent of the department's current grant spending.

Duke Energy Seeks Another Rate Hike for North Carolina Customers

October 11, 2017 Duke Energy subsidiary Duke Energy Carolinas requested to raise the rates of its residential customers by 16.7 percent. The request would shift onto customers the cost of cleaning up millions of tons of toxic coal ash.

TVA Looks for More Exemptions From National Envionmental Policy Act

October 11, 2017 The Tennessee Valley Authority is looking to increase the number of categorical exclusions to the National Environmental Policy Act, which do not require environmental studies or public involvement for a project to move forward.