Advocates say FirstEnergy decommissioning funds inadequate

NUCLEAR: Consumer and environmental groups tell the Nuclear Regulatory Commission that FirstEnergy’s trust funds for decommissioning nuclear plants were nearly $3 billion short as of 2017. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)

SOLAR:
• Recent changes to two Minnesota utility incentive programs could spur up to 200 MW of new projects and attract out-of-state developers, advocates say. (Energy News Network)
• A northern Illinois county may choose to permit solar projects on a case-by-case basis rather than create more comprehensive rules. (Rockford Register Star)

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RENEWABLES: Bloomberg New Energy Finance predicts wind and solar will make up nearly half of global electricity generation by 2050 due to cost reductions and cheaper batteries.

Midwest states struggle for restitution following Volkswagen scandal

EMISSIONS: Illinois, Ohio and Minnesota are among states having trouble getting restitution from Volkswagen under state environmental laws after the company’s emissions scandal. (Chicago Tribune)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Some environmental groups are skeptical of Ameren Missouri’s request for incentives for EV charging stations due to the utility’s relatively large coal portfolio. (Energy News Network)

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SOLAR:
• A northern Michigan electric cooperative is the state’s latest utility to set new solar compensation rates, which some members say will discourage installations.

Enbridge report details cost, timeline of potential pipeline tunnel

PIPELINES: Enbridge estimates a tunnel beneath the Straits of Mackinac for its Line 5 pipeline could cost up to $500 million and take six years to build. (Detroit Free Press)

ALSO:
• Michigan’s attorney general has taken concrete action on the Line 5 pipeline, though not as drastic as some environmentalists wish. (Bridge Magazine)
• Minnesota regulators are expected to decide next week on whether to approve Enbridge’s Line 3 replacement. (Minnesota Public Radio)

***SPONSORED LINK: Registration is now open for the TransGrid-X 2030 Symposium, July 26, in Ames, Iowa. The event will showcase the long-awaited NREL Seam Study — a concept featuring bi-directional high-voltage transmission; 600 GW of wind, solar and gas-fired generation; and a trillion-dollar economic event, if fully built.***

CLIMATE: A recent report recognizes the growing trend of shareholder proposals for climate-related disclosures, but finds the proposals don’t affect stock values in the short term.

South Dakota Supreme Court dismisses appeal against Keystone XL

PIPELINES: The South Dakota Supreme Court dismisses an appeal from opponents of the Keystone XL pipeline. (Associated Press)

TECHNOLOGY: An Illinois nonprofit launches a mobile notification system that allows customers without smartphones to access programs that manage home energy use. (Midwest Energy News)

***SPONSORED LINK: Registration is now open for the TransGrid-X 2030 Symposium, July 26, in Ames, Iowa. The event will showcase the long-awaited NREL Seam Study — a concept featuring bi-directional high-voltage transmission; 600 GW of wind, solar and gas-fired generation; and a trillion-dollar economic event, if fully built.***

EMISSIONS:
• Maryland is suing the U.S. EPA over emissions from power plants in upwind states, including Indiana and Ohio. (Associated Press)
• Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette faces criticism over his record of challenging Obama administration policies on air emissions from power plants.