Quick energy reads

** Drivers in the state of Washington are celebrating the official start of summer with an unwelcome sight: America’s most expensive gas prices. The average cost of regular gasoline in Washington state has jumped by 32 cents over the past month to $4.93 a gallon, according to AAA. That’s 7 cents ahead of California, which is notorious for its high prices for everything, especially fuel.

** Gov. Gavin Newsom’s decision to prolong the life of controversial power plants to help keep the lights on in California is once again being questioned by environmentalists. A new report released Wednesday, commissioned by the California Environmental Justice Alliance and Sierra Club, said that during last year’s unprecedented heat wave, California’s natural gas-fired plants failed to generate the expected levels of power while significantly increasing pollution in nearby communities.

** Texas power prices soared 100% on Tuesday amid a massive heat wave that broke some records. The price shot up to about $5,000 per megawatt-hour from $2,500 earlier in the day. Temperatures topped 110 degrees in parts of Texas on Tuesday.

** Biden administration officials touted that nearly 200 new clean energy projects have been announced since the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), but spoke of the need to develop an energy-independent supply chain to meet demand.

** Cheniere Energy has entered into a long-term agreement with Norway’s Equinor to supply 1.75 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) of liquefied natural gas (LNG), it said on Wednesday. The contract will help build commercial momentum for the proposed Sabine Pass LNG expansion.

** Several people were injured when hit by what one person described as “apple-sized” hail during a concert at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado on Wednesday night, rescue officials said.

** The U.S. EPA begins three days of hearings to gather public input on whether carbon capture injection wells should be regulated by the federal government or state of Louisiana.

** Pennsylvania utility regulators say they collected nearly $279 million in fracking impact fees from shale gas drillers in 2022 that they’ll distribute to affected communities.

** The Maine legislature passed a bill this week prohibiting investor-owned utilities from charging customers for lobbying, trade association and chambers of commerce dues, charitable contributions, and public relations expenses. The bill also includes a provision to prohibit utilities from recovering contributions or gifts to political candidates, political parties, political or legislative committees, or any committee or organization working to influence referendum petitions or elections.


** A new offshore wind project coming to China will be the biggest one built to date, measuring as tall as a 70-story building, Design Boom reported. MingYang, the largest private wind turbine manufacturer in China, has announced the launch of the MySE 18.X-28X — and it says it’s the largest wind turbine on the planet.

** Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg on Wednesday gave her backing to a climate group shut down by the French government amid accusations it foments violence. The government issued a decree earlier on Wednesday outlawing Uprisings of the Earth (SLT), saying it had encouraged violence in a series of demonstrations, including one that saw fierce clashes with police over an irrigation project.

** Indonesia is starting trial runs for its first high-speed train, which will connect the capital Jakarta to a neighboring city of Bandung, after years of delays and cost overruns plagued the project.

** With Canada’s current slate of policies, the country will not be able to reach net-zero emission, according to a new report from the Canada Energy Regulator (CER). According to a CER press release, the ways Canada creates and consumes energy in a net-zero 2050 look “dramatically different,” than the country’s energy mix today, with a greater emphasis on electricity and a decrease in fossil fuel production and consumption.

** Shell plc’s (SHELDutch offshore wind farm, a consortium led by Shell and Mitsubishi subsidiary Eneco, produced its first electricity. The Hollandse Kust Noord offshore wind farm delivered its first megawatt-hours of green energy to the Dutch mainland via the electricity grid, operated by state-owned TenneT.

** The Boeing CompanyBA inks major order deals at the most prestigious aerospace event, Paris Air Show, with various airline companies worldwide. Boeing utilizes the platform to boost its order book, build on customer relationships and reaffirm its competitiveness in the industry. Amid significant purchase agreements, the key order was from Boeing’s longstanding client, Air India, which confirmed to invest in 290 new Boeing jets, thus marking the biggest order from South Asia for Boeing.

** The Church of England Pensions Board will offload its stake in Shell Plc as part of a total exit from oil and gas, as the influential investor turns its back on companies it says are failing to address climate risks.