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New Mission for Iceland’s Geothermal Industry: Engineers in Iceland, where geothermal power provides 30 percent of the nation’s electricity, have learned how to keep a geothermal plant running smoothly at relatively low cost. But startup costs — surveying and extracting heat from below the earth’s surface and turning it into electricity — remain high. That translates to opportunity, and Icelandic companies are seizing it. — Time

California Regulators Approve Edison-eSolar Plant: The California Public Utilities Commission approved a contract yesterday between Southern California Edison and eSolar, moving them one step closer to developing a planned 245-megawatt solar power plant. Pasadena-based eSolar will build and own the facility. — CNN Money

EPA Gets Tough on Heavy Diesel Truck Emissions: The EPA yesterday ordered heavy diesel truck and bus makers to install dashboard lights by 2010 that signal whether emissions-control equipment is malfunctioning. Environmental watchdogs called it a “rare positive eleventh-hour Bush administration rule.” — Washington Post

Texans Torn Over Carbon Cap: Texas produces and consumes more energy than any other state, largely due to carbon-intensive industries like oil, gas, and chemicals. But since it also leads the nation in wind energy, the state is divided on how carbon caps would impact its economy. — NYT’s Green Inc.

Obama Team to Name Key Energy, Environment Nominees Next Week: President-elect Barack Obama’s transition team plans to name nominees for EPA administrator and secretaries of energy and the interior. Scientific types top the list for the energy job, but they had better mind their social networks: Question #58 in the vetting process asks candidates for URLs of any sites featuring them “in either a personal or professional capacity (e.g. Facebook, My Space, etc.).” — Washington Post