Morning Headlamp – Kenai Dam Proposals Run Into Local Opposition

An effort to study the feasibility of a 700-foot-wide, 300-foot-tall hydroelectric dam at a salmon-spawning stream connected to the Kenai River has generated significant local opposition. Chugach Electric Association’s concept for dams along the Snow River, consist of two smaller dams to help the main dam store water for power generation.  The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Wednesday approved a three-year preliminary permit allowing the utility to study the idea and the potential impacts of the dams. Construction would be preceded by many years of environmental studies.

Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski and Rep. Don Young joined President Donald Trump Monday as he signed a resolution revoking an Obama-era Bureau of Land Management regulation. The rule, known as BLM Planning 2.0, redesigned the agency’s planning regulations, including how the agency takes public input. Since Congress used the Congressional Review Act to revoke the rule, BLM is prohibited from establishing a new rule that is at all similar, meaning previous planning rules will stay in place, likely for years to come.

Senator Murkowski criticized the Obama administration’s singular focus on climate change issues in Alaska, and praised President Trump’s focus on economic development. The Obama administration ignored local proponents for economic development in favor of promoting regulations on greenhouse gases, she said, accusing the administration of using Native Alaskans as a “photo op” at last year’s U.S.-Nordic Leaders’ Summit to tout locals’ concern about climate change. “Local input was only welcome if it served to advance a preset agenda,” Murkowski said.

Stockholders of both Tesoro Corp. (NYSE: TSO) and Western Refining Inc. (NYSE: WNR) voted to approve Tesoro’s acquisition of and merger with Western Refining. At separate stockholder meetings, Tesoro stockholders approved issuing common stock for the deal while stockholders of Western Refining approved the adoption of the acquisition agreement and plan of merger. Tesoro stockholders voted 99 percent in favor of the deal while Western Refining stockholders voted approximately 80 percent in favor.


First Reads

Repairs to leaking Cook Inlet natural gas line expected in coming days

Alaska Dispatch News, Alex DeMarban, March 28, 2017

Opposition rises quickly against proposal to study Kenai dams at Snow River

Alaska Dispatch News, Alex DeMarban, March 28, 2017

Murkowski, Young join Trump for signing of BLM rule repeal

Alaska Dispatch News, Erica Martinson, March 28, 2017

Murkowski Pans Obama’s Climate Focus, Says Arctic Is on Trump’s Radar

Morning Consult, Jack Fitzpatrick, March 28, 2017

Tesoro, Western Refining stockholders approve $6.4 billion merger & acquisition deal

San Antonio Business Journal, Sergio Chapa, March 24, 2017