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PNS Daily Newscast - May 17, 2019 


West Coast immigrants' rights groups pan President Trump’s new immigration proposal as “elitist.” Also on the Friday rundown: Consumer advocates want stronger energy-efficiency standards. And we'll take you to a state that ranks near the bottom for senior mental health.

Daily Newscasts

Public News Service - MT: Energy Policy

Renewables surpassed coal in energy production in the United States for the first time in April. (David Gilder/Adobe Stock)

HELENA, Mont. – The struggle is ramping up over the Colstrip coal-fired power plant and Montana's energy future. A headline-grabbing measure in the Legislature, nicknamed the Save Colstrip bill, would have allowed the utility NorthWestern Energy to buy a unit of the coal plant without regula

David Bernhardt, right, replaced former U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke, R-Mont., left, as head of the Interior Department last month. (U.S. Dept. of the Interior/Flickr)

HELENA, Mont. – Less than a month on the job and with investigations mounting, some Montanans are wondering if new Interior Secretary David Bernhardt will help or hinder Big Sky Country. The former oil and gas lobbyist is facing ethics scandals on multiple fronts, including a call last week

A bill on Colstrip is being considered by the Montana House. (Tracy/Flickr)

HELENA, Mont. — Opposition is growing to a bill that would allow Northwestern Energy to buy a unit at Colstrip without oversight from the Public Service Commission. Current and former Public Service Commission members have become increasingly vocal in their concerns that Senate Bill 331 will

A new report says extensive cleanup of Colstrip's coal-ash ponds would create more than twice as many jobs as current cleanup proposals. (Northern Plains Resource Council)

HELENA, Mont. – A thorough cleanup of the Colstrip Power Plant's coal-ash ponds could provide a major boost for the local economy, according to a new report. An analysis from the Northern Plains Resource Council, a grassroots conservation and agriculture group in Montana, finds that using an

Senate Bill 331 would allow NorthWestern Energy to pass on $75 million to Montana ratepayers if it buys more energy from Colstrip. (Tonyglen14/Flickr)

HELENA, Mont. — A controversial bill that would allow NorthWestern Energy to sidestep regulations to buy more power from the Colstrip coal plant continues to make its way through the Montana Legislature. Senate Bill 331, now in the house, is touted as a good deal to meet Montanans' energy ne

Climate change will be a big topic when conservation groups meet today with Montana lawmakers in the Old Supreme Court Room at the State Capitol. (Martin Kraft/Wikimedia Commons)

HELENA, Mont. - Groups are rallying in Helena today to push for action on climate change, wildlife, public lands and more. Two bills in their sights are designed to lay the groundwork for a clean-energy future. Senate Bill 189 would establish a carbon tax and use the money for property-tax relief.

One focus of Wednesday's rally is legislation that could help finance energy-efficiency upgrades for commercial buildings. (Northern Plains Resource Council)

HELENA, Mont. - Montanans are to gather at noon today outside the State Capitol to support clean energy in Big Sky Country. Folks at the Clean Power for All rally are calling on state lawmakers, now in their third week of the session, to provide better access to renewable energy. Mary Fitzpatrick,

Mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants dropped nearly 82 percent after the EPA put stricter emission limits in place in 2012. (Tim Evanson/Wikimedia Commons)

HELENA, Mont. – The Trump administration is set to weaken standards limiting emissions of mercury and other toxic pollutants from coal-fired power plants. Acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler has indicated that his agency will maintain the Obama-era Mercury and Air Toxics Standards. Howev

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