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Rich Nemec

Richard Nemec began writing for NGI in 1995 and has 30 years experience in the energy industry. He holds BA from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles; and a MA in journalism from Northwestern University, Evanston, IL; and completed MBA courses at Northwestern's Evening Graduate School of Management.

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West Coast Correspondent | Los Angeles, CA

email rich.nemec@naturalgasintel.com

Sempra CEO Calls California, Texas Utilities ‘No. 1 Story’

Sempra CEO Calls California, Texas Utilities ‘No. 1 Story’

San Diego-based Sempra plans to add to its five-year $32 billion capital expenditure (capex) budget, with most for the utilities in California and Texas, senior executives reported on Tuesday. Since last year the California utilities Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) and San Diego Gas and Electric Co (SDG&E) have added $900 million to capex plans…

July 2, 2021
Oregon Governor Set to Sign Clean Energy Mandate

Oregon Governor Set to Sign Clean Energy Mandate

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is expected to sign into law a bill passed by the legislature in June mandating 100% carbon-free electricity by 2040.  State House Bill (HB) 2021 requires electric utilities to transition to lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from their generation sources until they provide only carbon-free power supplies to Oregon consumers over…

July 1, 2021
California Regulators All In on Green Power, Pushing Out Natural Gas

California Regulators All In on Green Power, Pushing Out Natural Gas

Pushing out more natural gas-fired electric generation, California regulators last Thursday ordered 11,500 MW of carbon-free power to replace upcoming retirements of several old gas-fired generators and the state’s last nuclear plant. Calling its action historic, the five-member California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) called for the added renewables, batteries and efficiency measures to come online…

June 30, 2021
Washington State’s Natural Gas Outlook Scrutinized

Washington State’s Natural Gas Outlook Scrutinized

In the aftermath of the rejection of major energy projects, Washington stakeholders are trying to determine what the future holds for oil and natural gas in the Pacific Northwest. Two years ago, Washington’s Clean Energy Transformation Act (CETA) mandated carbon-free electricity by 2045. The use of natural gas was mandated until 2045 for up to…

June 29, 2021
Southwest Gas Readies Five RNG Projects

Southwest Gas Readies Five RNG Projects

Renewable natural gas (RNG) is set to take hold in Arizona and the high desert region of Southern California based on projects launched by Las Vegas-based Southwest Gas Corp. The five projects would collectively supply 10 million therms of RNG from wastewater treatment and dairy sites. The first project is the Tres Rios Wastewater Project…

June 28, 2021
Sempra, DOE Looking to Partner on Low Carbon Solutions

Sempra, DOE Looking to Partner on Low Carbon Solutions

The Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with San Diego-based Sempra Energy to work on decarbonization strategies. In the MOU, Sempra and NREL agreed to focus on advancing artificial intelligence to scale solutions across the United States. They also plan to integrate low-carbon fuel solutions, including…

June 21, 2021
California Using Energy Reliability Options to Cut Wildfire Risks to Power Grid

California Using Energy Reliability Options to Cut Wildfire Risks to Power Grid

The size of California’s wildfires doubled year/year in 2020, so state officials are throwing technology enhancements at the seasonal challenge through the utilities, grid operators and energy planners. “One of the biggest lessons we have learned is how unpredictable fire dangers and climate both are, and we’re still grappling somewhat with how to prepare for…

June 21, 2021
Bakken Pipeline Expected to Help North Dakota Production, Natural Gas Capture

Bakken Pipeline Expected to Help North Dakota Production, Natural Gas Capture

A Bakken Shale natural gas pipeline project is expected to increase North Dakota’s efforts to raise production and reduce flaring, according to the director of the state’s Pipeline Authority. MDU Resources Group Inc.’s pipeline unit, WBI Energy Inc. earlier this month received approval for an expansion project to build the North Bakken pipeline. Construction should…

June 18, 2021
Lease Terminated for Natural Gas-Fueled NW Methanol Plant in Washington

Lease Terminated for Natural Gas-Fueled NW Methanol Plant in Washington

A Chinese-backed methanol export plant proposed for the Port of Kalama in Washington has effectively been canceled after the sponsor said it would terminate its lease. Northwest Innovation Works (NWIW) notified port officials on Friday that it would end efforts to develop a project. Port officials blamed the “state’s regulatory and political environment for killing…

June 17, 2021
North Dakota Oil, Natural Gas Production Climb in April

North Dakota Oil, Natural Gas Production Climb in April

North Dakota exceeded its monthly production level projections for April, but it may be losing its bragging rights to New Mexico as the second largest oil producing state. Oil production was up 1% in April month/month to 33.6 million bbl, or 1.126 million b/d. Natural gas output grew at a 3.1% rate to 88.89 Bcf,…

June 16, 2021