Jim Malewitz

Jim Malewitz covers energy for the Tribune. Before arriving, he spent two years covering energy and environmental issues for Stateline, a nonprofit news service in Washington, D.C., where his work also appeared in The Washington Post and Chicago Tribune, among other newspapers. A native of Michigan, Jim has an undergraduate degree from Grinnell College in Iowa, where he played varsity baseball. He also holds a master’s from the University of Iowa, where he helped launch the nonprofit Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism. Jim loves tacos and barbecue, making him a good match for Austin’s eating scene. However, he remains on the lookout for great waffles.

Recent Contributions

Texas' Nuclear Waste Dump Gets Wiggle Room

John Ward, operations project task manager at Waste Control Specialists' facility near Andrews, Texas, walks over to inspect concrete canisters that will house drums of nuclear waste.
John Ward, operations project task manager at Waste Control Specialists' facility near Andrews, Texas, walks over to inspect concrete canisters that will house drums of nuclear waste.

UPDATED: Texas’ only radioactive waste site has permission to dramatically expand its capacity, take in new types of waste and reduce its financial liability should its owner suddenly close up shop.

 

 

Eagle Ford Sees Another Kind of Boom: Publishing

The Boom at Rudkin Productions. The newspaper caters to bored oil workers in South Texas.
The Boom at Rudkin Productions. The newspaper caters to bored oil workers in South Texas.

Drillers’ mad dash to the Eagle Ford has spurred a printing boom, as publishers court new advertisers and audiences — including industry executives, natives of transformed communities and oil workers with little to do in isolated towns.

On Climate Rules, Regulators Look Beyond Litigation

Gov. Rick Perry has said that a new federal proposal to cut carbon emissions is "the most direct assault yet on the energy providers that employ thousands of Americans."
Gov. Rick Perry has said that a new federal proposal to cut carbon emissions is "the most direct assault yet on the energy providers that employ thousands of Americans."

Texas should not bank on legal action to free itself from the Obama administration’s proposal to tackle climate change, two state regulators said Friday at a Public Utility Commission workshop.

 

Christi Craddick: The TT Interview

Railroad Commissioners Barry Smitherman (center), David Porter (left) and Christi Craddick (right) are shown at a Jan. 15, 2013, meeting in Austin.
Railroad Commissioners Barry Smitherman (center), David Porter (left) and Christi Craddick (right) are shown at a Jan. 15, 2013, meeting in Austin.

The Railroad Commission's new chairman on the agency's dual role as an industry watchdog and champion, the push to ban fracking in Denton and the commission’s efforts on earthquakes and disposal wells.

 

Railroad Commission Hopefuls Discuss Disposal Well Plan

Lynda Stokes, the mayor of Reno, Texas, testified before the Railroad Commission of Texas on Jan. 21, 2014. She voiced her concern about an increased number of earthquakes around Eagle Mountain Lake.
Lynda Stokes, the mayor of Reno, Texas, testified before the Railroad Commission of Texas on Jan. 21, 2014. She voiced her concern about an increased number of earthquakes around Eagle Mountain Lake.

Two candidates for the Railroad Commission welcomed the agency's newly proposed requirements for disposal well applications, saying they were a good first step in addressing the spate of earthquakes that have shaken up parts of North Texas.

Pegasus Pipeline's Partial Restart Concerns Some Texans

Workers mop up tar sands oil from a creek in the wake of Exxon Mobil's Pegasus pipeline spill, Mayflower, Arkansas.
Workers mop up tar sands oil from a creek in the wake of Exxon Mobil's Pegasus pipeline spill, Mayflower, Arkansas.

The reactivation of a stretch of the 66-year-old Pegasus pipeline has stirred concerns among some Texans who live along its path. Some worry that the 2013 Mayflower spill is an example of what could go wrong in their backyards.

 

The Brief: Hall Censured in Historic Vote

University of Texas Regent Wallace Hall talks with colleague Gene Powell during a break at a regents' meeting  on May 14, 2014.
University of Texas Regent Wallace Hall talks with colleague Gene Powell during a break at a regents' meeting on May 14, 2014.

Wallace Hall's future at the University of Texas System turned clearer on Monday: Lawmakers scolded the embattled regent but decided to keep him around — for now, at least.

 

State Struggles to Launch Energy Efficiency Program

A 2007 state law said that "smart" meters must "be deployed as rapidly as possible" across the state. Texas has spent more than $2.5 billion on the effort.
A 2007 state law said that "smart" meters must "be deployed as rapidly as possible" across the state. Texas has spent more than $2.5 billion on the effort.

A plan to provide low-income Texans with the tools to help them interact with "smart" meters and improve energy efficiency at their homes has been stuck in a bureaucratic limbo with no end in sight. 

Pipeline Proposal Revives Eminent Domain Debate

One of the many pipeline markers sprinkled across David Holland's family farm near Beaumont, Texas. Holland is involved in major litigation involving common carrier status against Denbury Resources, which built a pipeline across his land.
One of the many pipeline markers sprinkled across David Holland's family farm near Beaumont, Texas. Holland is involved in major litigation involving common carrier status against Denbury Resources, which built a pipeline across his land.

Landowners and pipeline companies are closely scrutinizing proposed rules aimed at clearing up confusion over a status that gives pipeline companies the right to claim private property using eminent domain.