Energy news in brief


** U.S. greenhouse gas emissions tumbled 18 percent this spring as a result of the coronavirus pandemic that crippled the economy, according to a new analysis released this week.

** Communities from Georgia to Illinois have expressed outrage over their elevated cancer risk stemming from emissions of a toxic gas from neighboring medical sterilizing facilities, and EPA has responded by promising to update the air regulation governing the facilities

** Seven people were killed in an explosion at the Gbetiokun oil field in southern Nigeria’s Niger Delta region during the installation of a ladder on a platform, the state oil company said on Wednesday.

** The latest oil price collapse coupled with the considerable economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic has battered Colombia’s fragile economy. As the strife-torn Latin American country emerged from decades of civil conflict and narrowly avoided becoming a failed state, it pegged future development and economic growth on oil.

** Oil companies are being forced to cut spending due to a fall in global oil prices, threatening funds earmarked to dismantle dated off-shore rigs, despite environmental risks. A drastic drop in revenue caused by the coronavirus outbreak has seen majors such as Total and Royal Dutch Shell.

** Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced on Wednesday that the commonwealth had officially joined the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a regional carbon cap-and-trade program. In doing so, Virginia became the first Southern state to join the program.

** Peabody Energy and Arch Resources challenge a federal agency’s claim that a proposed merger would cause “anticompetitive harm” to Wyoming’s Powder River Basin.

** Alaska Native advocates continue to complain that the BLM is limiting public input into the agency’s plans to massively expand oil and gas drilling along the North Slope.

** While it appears to be more difficult to build large oil pipelines in the U.S., the same is true for major transmission projects that can move renewable energy to population centers, a columnist writes.

** The Tennessee Valley Authority offers to roughly double its number of employees in Memphis and spend $135 million over a decade on energy efficiency and urban revitalization if the city’s utility stays contracted with TVA.

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