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  1. Coal News: Thai gov't panel approves coal plant in popular tourist area

    A woman holds up a sign against a proposed coal-fired plant on Thailand's coast, in Bangkok, Thailand, Feb. 17, 2017. Thai government's committee approved construction of an 800-megawatt coal power plant near pristine beaches on the Andaman Sea, Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha announced Friday. The plant and an accompanying dock are slated to be built next to an existing oil plant on the coast in Krabi, a major tourist destination. (AP Photo/Dake Kang) BANGKOK (AP) — A government committee has approved construction of an 800-megawatt coal power plant near pristine beaches on the Andaman Sea, Thailand's prime minister said Friday. The plant and an accompanying dock are slated to be built next to an existing oil plant on the coast in Krabi, a province whose sandy shores, aqua-blue waters, and soaring limestone cliffs that plunge dramatically into the Andaman Sea make it a world-famous tourist destination. The announcement by Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha that the National Energy Policy Committee has given the go-ahead to the project was criticized by activists who worry the plant will pollute local waters and spoil scenery. They say it will damage tourism and fishing, and that eco-friendly alternatives should be considered instead. The Energy Ministry says southern Thailand's power grid falls hundreds of megawatts short during peak demand, requiring electrical backup from Malaysia or provinces further north. But environmentalists argued in a report submitted to the ministry last year that biomass, wind, or other renewable energy sources could make up the shortfall. The proposal will be reviewed to meet environmental standards before being forwarded to the Cabinet. Prayuth, who heads a military government, chaired the committee and in announcing its approval said the project was necessary to avoid future shortages and was safe. Several hundred demonstrators traveled overnight from Krabi to stage a sit-in at the gates outside the prime minister's office compound, waving green flags emblazoned with "NO COAL" under skulls and crossbones. Some scuffled with police guards after the decision was announced. "It's not right," Akradej Chakjinda, leader of activist group Save Krabi, said of the decision. "He's not listening to the local people. He's listening just to members of the energy ministry, to his friends." Activists say the plant and its pollution will wreck Krabi's tourist trade and hurt fishermen, damaging two of the largest industries in the province. Tourism made up 17.7 percent of Thailand's economy in 2016, according to official statistics. "Krabi is very famous for its nature, people come for nature, but now you destroy nature." said Ponwarin Kanantai, 20, a college student whose parents run a hotel in a beachside town in Krabi. "It's not our generation — you have think of the next generation, how will they be impacted by coal ." Officials say the plant will adhere to high cleanliness standards and will burn premium-grade coal imported from Australia to cut down on emissions. They point out it will be built next to an already-existing power station hidden behind trees — not, they say, on pristine grounds.

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    Sat, 18 Feb 2017

  2. Coal News: Colstrip owner pushes for tax break to keep plant units open

    Talen Energy is pushing Montana lawmakers for a tax break worth millions to keep two units of the coal - fired Colstrip power plant open, with one Republican leader saying Tuesday the units could close within the year without some form of assistance.

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    Thu, 23 Feb 2017

  3. Energy Industry: Emails: EPA's Pruitt cozy with fossil fuel industry

    While serving as Oklahoma's attorney general, new Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt coordinated closely with fossil-fuel companies and special interest groups working to undermine federal efforts to curb planet-warming carbon emissions, newly released emails show.

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    Fri, 24 Feb 2017

  4. Energy Prices: Cuccinelli, lawmakers push to end utility rate freeze

    A bill undoing a 2015 law that froze electric rate reviews died swiftly this legislative session, but opponents of the law, including former Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, said Tuesday it's not too late to see it repealed.

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    Thu, 23 Feb 2017

  1. Coal News: With electricity out, new EPA chief reached out to lobbyist

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    Sat, 25 Feb 2017

  2. Nuclear Power: Study: Savings possible by shutting down nuclear power plant

    A new study says Pacific Northwest utility ratepayers could save hundreds of millions of dollars if the Bonneville Power Administration and Energy Northwest close the region's only commercial nuclear power plant in Richland, Washington and replace its output with renewable energy.

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    Thu, 23 Feb 2017

  3. Coal News: Coal -fired plant's owners expected to vote on its future

    Owners of a coal - fired power plant in northern Arizona are expected to vote on its future, considering options that include a possible closure within a few years.

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    Tue, 14 Feb 2017

  4. Coal News: Thai leader says impact of coal plant to be studied again

    Thailand's prime minister said Tuesday the government will ensure that environmental and health impact studies for a coal power plant approved by its energy policy planning committee will be reconsidered, but made clear he expects the project to proceed.

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    Wed, 22 Feb 2017

  5. China suspends coal power projects to avoid overcapacity

    China's National Energy Administration has ordered the suspension of 85 coal - fired power projects. 

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    Tue, 17 Jan 2017

  6. Wind Power: Measure proposes moratorium on North Dakota wind energy

    Worried North Dakota's burgeoning wind-energy industry may be threatening the state's coal - fired power plants, a Republican lawmaker has proposed legislation that would halt wind-generation projects for two years.

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    Wed, 22 Feb 2017

  7. Energy Industry: Pruitt OK'd as EPA chief over environmentalists' objections

    Over the strong objections of environmental groups, the Senate confirmed Scott Pruitt to lead the Environmental Protection Agency on Friday, giving President Donald Trump an eager partner to fulfill his campaign pledge to increase the use of planet-warming fossil fuels.

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    Tue, 21 Feb 2017

  8. Renewable Energy: All power providers met or exceeded renewable standard

    Michigan regulators say all power providers met or exceeded a requirement to supply 10 percent of their electricity from renewable sources in 2015.

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    Fri, 17 Feb 2017

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