Entries by Neal Barkus

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Conservation West Virginia Supports Rep. David McKinley in the May 10 Republican Primary

Because of population loss, West Virginia’s three Congressional districts have been consolidated into two. The new 2nd District covers roughly the northern half of the state and pits two incumbent Republican Congressmen against one another in the primary on May 10.  David McKinley, from Wheeling, is the sitting Congressman from the old 1st District. Alex […]

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2022 Legislative Recap: One Step Forward and Two Steps Back

The West Virginia Legislature ended its 2022 regular session at midnight March 12, 2022. Altogether, the Legislature passed 293 bills. Sixty-two bills introduced were energy or environment related. Only 8 of them passed. Some of the unsuccessful bills we opposed.  Many more we supported. Energy Policy  There was a lot of long-range thinking about the […]

WV House Passes Program to Regulate Geothermal Energy

In response to a research project being conducted at West Virginia University, the House of Delegates passed HB 4098 on February 10, 2022.  This bill sets up a regulatory structure for geothermal energy in the state.  Geothermal energy is the Earth’s heat reached by drilling wells several miles deep.  WVU has acquired a $7.25 million […]

WV Repeals Restrictions on Nuclear Power

In a fast-tracked process resulting in the passage of SB 4 by the West Virginia Legislature, the state no longer has any statutory guidance on how to evaluate an application to build a nuclear power plant. The repeal bill was signed by the Governor on February 8, 2022. The repealed statute — WV Code 16-27A-2 […]

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WV House Passes Bill Easing Regulation of Aboveground Storage Tanks Near Drinking Water Intakes

In 2014, a leak from an aboveground storage tank on the Elk River just above the drinking water intake for Charleston and much of Kanawha County polluted drinking water for 300,000 consumers. As a result the West Virginia Legislature passed the Aboveground Storage Tank Act imposing strict safety and inspection rules on such tanks.  Almost […]

Nuclear Power for West Virginia?

Conservation West Virginia is not opposed to nuclear power, which might solve a lot of our climate problems. We hope it will continue to be explored. On January 21, 2022, the West Virginia House Energy Committee passed out a bill for consideration by the full House (HB 2882) that would repeal the current law governing […]

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The New Civilian Climate Corps

Immediately upon assuming office, President Biden issued an executive order addressing his climate objectives.  Prominent among these was the creation of a Civilian Climate Corps to tackle climate change resiliency and provide job training to underemployed youth.  The new CCC would be modeled on a popular New Deal program that put thousands to work on […]