Energy quick reads

** The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Monday finalized a rule that would ban using and importing cancer-causing asbestos, a material still used in some vehicles and in some industrial facilities in the U.S., the first chemical banned under a 2016 chemical safety law.

* The U.S. Energy Department (DOE) will unveil final rules that will significantly soften its proposal that would have slashed electric vehicles’ (EV) mileage ratings to meet government fuel economy requirements in 2027, sources said.

** Hertz, which announced in January it was selling 20,000 of the electric vehicles in its fleet, or about a third of the EVs it owned, is now replacing the CEO who helped build up that fleet, giving it the company’s fifth boss in just four years. The company announced that Stephen Scherr, who came to the company two years ago after nearly 30 years at Goldman Sachs, is stepping down at the end of this month.

** U.S. Senator Joe Manchin on Monday told energy executives that legislation reforming infrastructure permitting “will get done.” The legislation is his senate energy committee’s top issue, he said to a packed audience at the CERAWeek energy conference.

** A new study has revealed how electric vehicles can have an even greater positive impact on the planet. Coltura, an environmental nonprofit based in Seattle, found that the top 10% of motorists — meaning those who drive an average of about 40,200 miles a year — use about one-third of the gas used for transportation in the U.S.

** Exxon Mobil Corp. won’t move forward with one of the world’s largest, low-carbon hydrogen projects if the Biden administration withholds tax incentives for natural gas-fed facilities, Chief Executive Officer Darren Woods said during an interview.

** California Gov. Gavin Newsom‘s office is dismissing a new report saying the Golden State will fail to meet its climate change mandates unless it nearly triples its rate of reduction of greenhouse gases through 2030.


** The world’s largest solar panel manufacturer is set to slash its workforce by almost a third as the industry struggles with oversupply and cut-throat competition. Chinese giant Longi Green Technology Energy reportedly plans to cut staff numbers by up to 30pc, in an expansion of lay-offs that began four months ago.

** Riding on the heels of Austria’s largest gas discovery in 40 years by Austrian OMV, junior explorer MCF Energy announced on Monday morning another potentially significant find in their maiden drill in the Austrian Alps.

** Carbon-free energy generation in Canada is being fast-tracked following a government announcement that approval processes for nuclear power projects will be made quicker. Energy and Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said that while the process to construct these facilities will be much faster, they will not be excluded from federal environmental reviews.

** Mexico’s leading presidential candidate Claudia Sheinbaum vowed to keep up support for state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos, even while capping the company’s oil production in a push toward renewable energy.

** A Russian energy ministry official told a parliament meeting on Tuesday there were plans to defend oil and gas facilities with missile systems. Ukraine has stepped up attacks on Russian oil infrastructure since the start of the year, hitting numerous large oil refineries in an attempt to cripple Russia’s military and curb its army’s advances.

** Canada, citing the need to shun Russian energy, on Monday signed an agreement with Germany that it said would accelerate work towards the commercial-scale trade of clean hydrogen fuel. The two nations inked a memorandum of understanding that commits them to backing transactions between Canadian