Overnight Energy: Major California utility PG&E filing for bankruptcy after wildfires | Zinke hired at investment firm | Barclays to avoid most Arctic drilling financing

Overnight Energy: Major California utility PG&E filing for bankruptcy after wildfires | Zinke hired at investment firm | Barclays to avoid most Arctic drilling financing

PG&E PLANS BANKRUPTCY FILING: Electric and natural gas utility giant PG&E Corp. on Monday said it will file for bankruptcy protection as it faces billions of dollars of potential liability for its role in recent California wildfires.

The announcement, which follows a California-mandated 15-day advance notice of bankruptcy, is an effort to reorganize to ensure the "orderly, fair and expeditious resolution" of its liabilities for the 2017 and 2018 wildfire seasons, which analysts say could be more than $30 billion. It said last week it has just $1.6 billion of cash or cash equivalents on hand.

The San Francisco-based company, whose main unit is Pacific Gas and Electric Co., had said late Sunday that Geisha Williams, its CEO for less than two years, would resign.

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"The people affected by the devastating Northern California wildfires are our customers, our neighbors and our friends, and we understand the profound impact the fires have had on our communities and the need for PG&E to continue enhancing our wildfire mitigation efforts," interim CEO John Simon said in a statement.

"We believe a court-supervised process under Chapter 11 will best enable PG&E to resolve its potential liabilities in an orderly, fair and expeditious fashion," he continued. "We expect this process also will enable PG&E to access the capital and resources we need to continue providing our customers with safe service and investing in our systems and infrastructure."

Read more on PG&E's challenges here.

 

Happy Monday! The government shutdown clock is at Day 24. On Saturday, it became the longest federal government shutdown in history.

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ZINKE LANDS AT INVESTMENT FIRM: Former Interior Secretary Ryan ZinkeRyan Keith ZinkeInterior looking to rely on staffers with less training for park law enforcement: report DOJ investigation into former Interior chief goes to grand jury Overnight Energy: Zinke joins Trump-tied lobbying firm | Senators highlight threat from invasive species | Top Republican calls for Green New Deal vote in House MORE has landed his first job since resigning from the Trump administration.

Artillery One, an investment firm that focuses on industries like energy and financial technology, said Monday that Zinke is its new managing director.

The announcement came less than two weeks after Zinke departed his Interior role. He announced in December that he would leave amid accusations that he violated ethics rules. He has denied the allegations.

"Secretary Zinke brings a wealth of experience and understanding of the workings of business and government," Daniel Cannon, Artillery One's CEO, said in a statement.

"His expertise in the energy and technology sectors will help Artillery One to continue to expand its consulting and finance business in the core areas of cybersecurity, energy, fintech and digital assets. We look forward to introducing him to our strategic partners and clients around the globe."

More on Zinke's new gig here.

 

BARCLAYS MAKES NEW ARCTIC DRILLING PLEDGE: U.K.-based international bank Barclays will likely reject opportunities to finance oil and gas drilling in the Arctic as well as other climate change threats, according to a new policy it announced Monday.

In its Energy and Climate Change Statement, the bank said it would be unlikely to finance drilling jobs in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), saying the area's "particularly fragile and pristine ecosystem" is "central to the livelihoods and culture of local indigenous peoples."

"Any client conducting new exploration of or extraction of Arctic oil and gas will be subject to EDD," known as Enhanced Due Diligence.  "Additionally, Barclays will conduct EDD on any financing transaction directly connected with the exploration or extraction of oil or gas in the Arctic. Under the EDD framework, we would not expect such project finance proposals to meet our criteria," the policy reads.

The company stopped short of saying it would pull out of all current financing.

Read more on the pledge here.

 

OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY:

New and updated electric car models are taking center stage this week at the Detroit Auto Show, The New York Times reports.

The United Nations is warning that water desalination plants around the world are harming the environment, BBC reports.

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U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell angered Germany with warnings that companies involved in the Nord Stream 2 pipeline could be subject to sanctions, Reuters reports.

 

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

Check out stories from Monday and the weekend ...

Zinke takes job at investment firm

- Barclays to reject most financing for Arctic drilling

- Utility PG&E plans bankruptcy amid wildfire liability

- Oregon governor's husband cleans park amid shutdown, sends Trump bill

- Trump taps Commerce watchdog to be new Interior inspector general