Energy news in brief

** The Trump administration on Wednesday announced the authorization of a roughly 3,000-acre solar farm near Palm Springs, California, after developers scaled back its size to help avoid threatened desert tortoises and cultural artifacts. First Solar Inc.’s 450-megawatt Desert Quartzite project in eastern Riverside County has been praised by some environmentalists for its careful design on lands teeming with protected species and relics.

** The cost to plug orphaned oil and gas wells in Ohio could reach $2 billion as the number of confirmed wells continues to grow.

** An Illinois agency approves plans for a pipeline to move millions of gallons of mining waste to the Big Muddy River.

**  Colorado lawmakers disagree on whether 38 climate protestors should have been arrested last week for delaying Gov. Jared Polis’s State of the State speech in the Capitol.

** Environmental groups are suing the Trump administration over its fracking plans for public lands in California, citing an inadequate federal analysis on environmental and health impacts.

** Encore Green Environmental has been granted a one-time permit from Wyoming’s Department of Environmental Quality to apply treated wastewater from oil drilling to farming operations.

** Kern County, California oil industry officials say Gov. Gavin Newsom’s goal to be free of fossil fuels by 2045 is stifling the county’s economic future.

** The Energy Information Administration’s Short-Term Energy Outlook bumped up its forecast for crude oil production by 100,000 barrels per day this year to 13.3 million bpd, well above the record 12.2 million bpd produced in 2019.

** Tallgrass Energy, LP  announced that Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Gary J. Brauchle has informed the Board of Directors of the general partner  of his intent to resign as Chief Financial Officer on February 14, 2020. The Board has appointed Senior Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer, Gary D. Watkins, as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, also effective February 14, 2020.

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