ENERGY + ENVIRONMENT

Virginia will not relax its enforcement of environmental regulations despite an announcement by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last week that it won’t impose civil penalties on polluting facilities that don’t comply with routine monitoring and reporting obligations during the coronavirus pandemic.“All regulated entities are expected to make every...
With Democrats in charge, Virginia passed a suite of bills that establish a sturdy framework for a transition to renewable energy in the electric sector.At the center of this transformation are the Clean Economy Act, HB1526/SB851, and the Clean Energy and Community Flood Preparedness Act, HB981/SB1027. Other new...
Three weeks ago, Virginia’s Democrat-led General Assembly passed the most ambitious plan for transitioning off of fossil fuels and onto renewable energy sources to come out of the South yet.It was a banner moment for environmentalists. Among the promises they secured were state commitments to build out 24 gigawatts...
In Pittsylvania County, in the heart of Southside tobacco country, farmer Robert Mills’ greenhouse is full of seedlings ready to be transplanted.Mills, however, is uncertain about whether he should put them into the ground.“We have to make a commitment as to whether we’re going to plant any of these...
Coal mining continues in Southwest Virginia even as workplace constraints prevent miners from following many of the social distancing practices recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.As of Monday, all of Virginia’s coal and mineral mines that had been open before the appearance of COVID-19, the disease...
The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality has suspended all routine fieldwork, including regular inspections and in-person monitoring, for two weeks in the face of the continuing spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus.The agency announced the move Wednesday afternoon as part of a push...
Virginia General Assembly members have an expression for when opposing interests agree on a bill: they call it “peace in the valley.” The phrase comes from a gospel song by Thomas A. Dorsey, written for Mahalia Jackson and then later sung by a bunch of white guys including Red Foley...
Virginians will see some expansion in their choice of companies to buy electricity from after two proposals killed at the urging of the state’s two largest electric monopolies, Dominion Energy and Appalachian Power Company, were unexpectedly resurrected in the waning days of the session. The bills, which still have to...
WASHINGTON — Property rights advocates and environmentalists are often foes when it comes to federal regulations. But they’ve found some common ground in their shared desire to prod Congress and the courts to overhaul the federal permitting process for natural gas pipelines. Property rights advocates contend that the current system enables...
When the General Assembly reconvenes for its final day of the 2020 session Thursday, it may take up an 11th-hour proposal from Democratic Sen. Louise Lucas of Portsmouth that would smooth the path for Dominion Energy to establish a program that could put up to 1,250 electric school buses...