Charlie Paullin

Charlie Paullin

Charles Paullin covers energy and environment for the Mercury. He previously worked for Northern Virginia Daily in the Northern Shenandoah Valley and for the New Britain Herald in central Connecticut. An Alexandria native, Charles graduated from the University of Hartford initially wanting to cover sports. He's received several Virginia Press Association awards for his coverage of crime, local government and state politics.

Ashland farmer facing federal lawsuit over wetlands damage

By: - November 30, 2023

An Ashland man is facing a civil lawsuit from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over damages to 21 acres of wetlands, a natural resource with numerous environmental benefits, adjacent to tributaries of the Chickahominy and Pamunkey rivers. According to the EPA, Gary Layne, 62, and his company Chameleon, LLC “conducted extensive clearing, grubbing, earth-moving, and […]

Democratic control of legislature opens up chance for long-delayed SCC appointments

By: - November 29, 2023

After securing control of both chambers of the Virginia General Assembly in the November elections, Democrats will have a new opportunity during the 2024 session to fill two long-time vacancies on the State Corporation Commission, the state body that regulates utilities, insurance, banking and business in Virginia. Incoming Senate Commerce and Labor Committee Chair Creigh […]

D.C. region, including NoVa, sets ‘ambitious’ goal for rooftop solar

By: - November 27, 2023

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments passed a resolution this November that sets a goal of having solar panels installed on 250,000 rooftops in the Washington, D.C. metro region, an area encompassing the nation’s capital, Northern Virginia and parts of Maryland, by 2030. Members of the energy industry say meeting the target will take some […]

The State Corporation Commission

Solar developers continue to fight Dominion’s solar interconnection rules

By: - November 21, 2023

After a state hearing examiner ruled Dominion Energy could temporarily enforce rules for how certain solar projects connect to the grid, developers are asking the State Corporation Commission to hold a full evidentiary hearing on whether or not those rules are justified. The disagreement is the latest chapter in an ongoing fight between Dominion and […]

After Siemens turbine plant cancellation, can Hampton Roads still be a hub for offshore wind?

By: - November 20, 2023

Detroit is known for automobile manufacturing. San Francisco is known for technology. Hampton Roads hopes to be known for offshore wind development.  In 2020, the Virginia Clean Economy Act, an ambitious roadmap to decarbonize the state’s electric grid by midcentury, was signed into law with provisions encouraging the development of thousands of megawatts of offshore […]

Dominion to test another long duration battery, microgrid capability at Va. State University

By: - November 16, 2023

Dominion Energy Virginia plans to test another long-duration energy battery storage project, this time for the Multi-Purpose Center at Virginia State University. The use of a long-duration battery is Dominion’s latest step in its testing of the storage technologies, and one that could provide insight on creating microgrids. “These projects could be game changers for […]

The State Corporation Commission

Proposed Dominion rate settlement would keep customer base rates stable for next two years

By: - November 15, 2023

Dominion Energy Virginia customers would see no increase in base rates for electric service over the next two years under an agreement between the utility and ratepayer, environmental and other groups announced Tuesday evening. In addition to maintaining current base rates — the primary component of customers’ electric bills, based on how much power they […]

Virginians can apply for state fuel assistance to help with heat costs through Monday

By: - November 9, 2023

Following the extreme cold temperatures Virginia experienced last year during Winter Storm Elliott, residents concerned about paying heating bills this year can apply for state help. The deadline for residents to apply for fuel assistance is 6 p.m. Monday. The application window typically opens the second Tuesday in October and runs through the second Friday […]

Fairfax County judge weighing fate of suit over Youngkin’s carbon market withdrawal

By: - October 27, 2023

A Fairfax County judge is weighing whether to throw out a lawsuit from environmental groups challenging Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s effort to remove Virginia from a regional carbon market. Judge David Oblon heard oral arguments from Virginia Solicitor General Andrew Ferguson and Southern Environmental Law Center Senior Attorney Nate Benforado Friday morning in Fairfax Circuit […]

electric vehicle charging station

Dominion’s electric vehicle charging infrastructure program has zero sign-ups

By: - October 27, 2023

It’s been about a year since Dominion Energy began offering its Virginia customers discounts on installing infrastructure to charge electric vehicles and no one has signed up to take advantage of them, according to a recent bi-annual report filed with electric utility regulators. Despite a lack of participation, Dominion sees the program, known as the […]

State study on menhaden in Chesapeake Bay would cost $2.6 million

By: - October 25, 2023

Following legislation this past session that required the Virginia Institute of Marine Science to determine how long a study on the Atlantic menhaden population in the Chesapeake Bay would take and how much it would cost, the results are in: at least three years and $2.6 million, if everything were done simultaneously. Recreational anglers who […]

Senate District 27 race: Republican Durant vs. Democrat Griffin vs. Independent Gary

By: - October 20, 2023

Virginia’s Senate District 27, a newly drawn district around the city of Fredericksburg in a region with a history of tight margins, has the most crowded ballot in the state.  There, Republican Del. Tara Durant, Democrat Joel Griffin and Independent Monica Gary are sparring on abortion access, learning loss and electoral reforms. Republican Matt Strickland, […]