Arizona Regulators to Utilities: Get Your Money Out of State Politics : Greentech Media

Here are some of the stories we’re reading this morning.

Arizona Daily Sun: Regulators Want Utilities to Keep Money Out of Campaigns

Two state utility regulators want the Arizona Corporation Commission to adopt a formal policy urging utilities to stay out of future races for the panel.

And if the request doesn’t stop the money, they may seek an audit of affected companies to find out exactly how they’re spending their money on politics.

In pushing the plan, Chairwoman Susan Bitter Smith and member Bob Burns cited media reports of the apparent involvement of Arizona Public Service and Pinnacle West Capital Corp., its parent, in trying to elect two specific Republicans in the 2014 race by funneling money through outside groups.

SF Gate: PG&E Plan Would Hit Solar Homes Harder Than Previously Thought

California’s utility companies have proposed making solar power less financially attractive to homeowners, now that so many are generating their own electricity and cutting their monthly bills. Now it appears that for customers of Pacific Gas and Electric Co., those changes could have a bigger impact than initially thought.

On Aug. 3, PG&E and the state’s other big utility companies proposed changing the state’s financial incentives for people who install solar panels on their roofs. On Thursday, however, the San Francisco utility refined its estimates. Some solar homeowners who take aggressive steps to cut their energy use and install batteries connected to their solar arrays would end up paying $13 more per month than they would under today’s rules.

Financial Times: Eni Discovers ‘Supergiant’ Gasfield Near Egypt

Italian energy group Eni has discovered what it says is a “supergiant” gasfield off the coast of Egypt, the largest ever found in the Mediterranean Sea and which could provide a much-needed boost for the country’s economy.

Eni, one of Europe’s biggest oil and gas companies, said on Sunday that the Zohr discovery “could become one of the world’s largest natural-gas finds” and would play a “major” role in meeting Egypt’s natural gas demand for decades once fully developed.

Mint: WTO Rules Against India in Solar Panels Dispute With the U.S.

A World Trade Organization panel has ruled against India in a dispute raised by the U.S. over the country’s solar power program, requiring the government to offer a level playing field to both foreign and domestic manufacturers of solar panels.

India is likely to appeal against the dispute settlement panel’s ruling, which could give it a two-year breather to implement the program.

The commerce ministry received the ruling last week, a ministry official said on condition of anonymity.

Boulder Weekly: U.S. and India Compete to Have the Largest Solar Power Field in the World

The U.S. Navy is investing in what will be the largest solar farm in the world in order to provide power for 14 of its bases.

In the same week that the U.S. Navy disclosed its plans, the central Indian state of Madya Pradesh announced it was to construct a 750-megawatt plant (1 megawatt is roughly enough to supply 1,000 typical British homes) on barren, government-owned land in the country’s Rewa district.

It is claimed that it would be the world’s largest solar plant, and the state’s energy minister, Rajendra Shukla, says the plan is to have the plant up and running by March 2017.

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