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.

Dominion, Dulles break ground on nation’s largest renewable energy project at an airport

By: - August 23, 2023

LOUDOUN COUNTY — Virginia and Dominion Energy officials gathered at Dulles International Airport Tuesday to celebrate the groundbreaking of a solar, battery storage and electric vehicle initiative that they said would be the nation’s largest renewable energy project at an airport. “We’re proud that Washington Dulles International will be the home of this project,” said […]

The State Corporation Commission

Virginia regulators to weigh Appalachian Power Company rate increase

By: - August 21, 2023

Appalachian Power Company, Virginia’s second-largest electric utility, is asking regulators for a big rate increase, citing inadequate revenues over the past three years and rising costs. If the State Corporation Commission agrees to the rate hike, it would increase the average monthly residential bill by about $20. Because of how much the company says it […]

Utility regulator recommends suspension of Dominion’s rules for connecting new solar to grid

By: - August 16, 2023

A Virginia utility regulator is recommending that rules set by Dominion Energy for how new generation sources can connect to the grid should be paused after solar developers argued they are throttling the development of new solar projects around the state. State Corporation Commission Hearing Examiner Mary Beth Adams recommended July 31 that the interconnection […]

Virginia regulators considering fall crabbing season extension

By: - August 15, 2023

Virginia’s Crab Management Advisory Committee recommended earlier this month that regulators consider extending Virginia’s fall crabbing season and loosening catch limits, allowing crabbers to catch more of the crustaceans.  Currently, the fall crabbing season runs July 5 to Nov. 30, with lower catch limits imposed beginning Oct. 1. The advisory committee is suggesting the season […]

4th Circuit dismisses remaining two Mountain Valley Pipeline cases

By: - August 11, 2023

The U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed two long-standing legal challenges against the Mountain Valley Pipeline Friday, citing its lack of authority to hear the cases following the passage of the Fiscal Responsibility Act earlier this year. The dismissals mean the project, which was temporarily halted by the latest legal challenges, can continue. “Here, […]

Budget standoff holds up amendment to staff Va. electric utility commission

By: - August 10, 2023

The continued failure of Democrats and Republicans to agree to amendments to Virginia’s two-year budget is tying up funding for six staff members for the Commission on Electric Utility Regulation, a body the General Assembly voted to reinvigorate this past session. Lawmakers see the Commission on Electric Utility Regulation, or CEUR, as a resource to […]

Four takeaways from Southwest Virginia’s critical mineral investigation

By: - August 8, 2023

Nearly a dozen researchers struck an optimistic tone in West Virginia last week when presenting the results of almost two years of study on whether Central Appalachia could develop industries around the extraction and processing of critical minerals and rare earth elements. Critical minerals and rare earth elements are substances like lithium, nickel and cobalt […]

Regional fisheries regulators extend emergency striped bass limits

By: - August 3, 2023

Regional fishery regulators are extending emergency protections for striped bass they instituted in May through October 2024. On Wednesday, the Atlantic Striped Bass Management Board of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission voted to extend through Oct. 28, 2024 an emergency action that forbids the recreational catching of striped bass longer than 31 inches in […]

Local Audubon Society asks Va. regulators to suspend use of fishing nets in Bay over osprey worries

By: - August 3, 2023

In the Chesapeake Bay, osprey are the region’s top avian predator, but recent research found many of their young aren’t surviving. In light of the research, the Richmond Audubon Society asked state fisheries regulators at the end of July to temporarily suspend the use of large fishing nets in the Chesapeake Bay for 30 days […]

Virginia enviro groups file notice they will challenge Youngkin’s RGGI withdrawal

By: - July 31, 2023

Environmental attorneys Monday filed notice that they intend to file a legal challenge against Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s proposed regulation to withdraw Virginia from the regional carbon market known as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. The Southern Environmental Law Center filed the notice of appeal in Richmond City Circuit Court on July 31 on behalf […]

The National Flood Insurance Program got a makeover last year. Here’s how it works.

By: - July 31, 2023

Virginians in flood-prone areas have more than just rising sea levels to worry about. They have rising flood insurance rates to worry about too. Many Virginians who get flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program will have to pay more under the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s new model for calculating rates, which went into […]

U.S. Supreme Court lifts stays on Mountain Valley Pipeline

By: - July 27, 2023

Work on the Mountain Valley Pipeline project is allowed to continue after U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts on Thursday lifted two stays, or pauses, imposed by a lower court in response to challenges from environmental groups.  The lifting of the stays was issued while the Richmond-based U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals was […]