MICHIGAN: In a new video, prominent state Republicans explain why it’s important that conservatives be involved in shaping clean-energy policy. (Midwest Energy News)

MINNESOTA
•  As Gov. Dayton seeks rail safety improvements, transportation officials note that more than 300,000 Minnesota residents live within a half mile of routes transporting oil from North Dakota. (Minnesota Public Radio)
•  Another look at the split in the state legislature over clean power versus cheap power. (Minneapolis Public Radio)
•  Minnesota is losing clout on transportation policy in Congress. (MinnPost)

***SPONSORED LINK: Join venture capitalists, civic leaders, and industry executives on April 14 at the Clean Energy Challenge in Chicago to watch fourteen cleantech startups compete for $1 million in total funding.***

CLEAN POWER PLAN
•  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell begins a state-by-state campaign to block the president’s climate change agenda. (New York Times)
•  A Kansas House panel approves a process for state-level compliance with the plan. (Associated Press)

ILLINOIS: ComEd joins state energy politics by backing legislation in response to a clean-energy and jobs bill introduced earlier this year by clean-energy groups. (Crain’s Chicago Business) 

COAL: While not doing so publicly, U.S. coal companies in mandatory financial disclosures acknowledge the link between fossil fuels and climate change. (Greenwire)

OIL AND GAS
•  A Minnesota town’s opposition to a rail expansion that allows freighters to move oil is part of a bigger trend of local opposition to these projects, though those efforts can be hamstrung. (EnergyWire)
•  Experts are unsure why seismic activity related to fracking is an issue in other states but not North Dakota. (Prairie Business)
•  Meanwhile, Kansas regulators order drilling operations in two counties to reduce the amount water injected underground to protect against earthquakes. (Associated Press)

EMINENT DOMAIN: A fifth-generation Minnesota farmer is successful against 11 utilities after they used eminent domain to run transmission lines across his property. (KTSP-TV)

TRANSMISSION: The bulk of FirstEnergy’s plan to spend $120 million on upgrades to its electric system in northwest Ohio will go towards distribution and transmission. (Toledo Blade)

EMISSIONS: Obama says it’s ‘important to lead by example’ by ordering the federal government to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent and increase its renewable portfolio. (Associated Press)

COMPLIANCE: While much of Wisconsin Energy Corp.’s attention has been on issues in the Upper Peninsula, Illinois regulators are investigating problems with a Chicago natural gas utility Wisconsin Energy wants to take over with merger. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

ETHANOL: The U.S. Department of Transportation has added ethanol to its list of hazardous liquids as part of amendments to pipeline safety regulations. (Biofuels Digest)

COMMENTARY: The utility-backed myth on the need for higher fixed rates to account for distributed generation. (Utility Dive)

Andy Balaskovitz

Andy Balaskovitz

Andy has been a journalism fellow for Midwest Energy News since 2014, following four years at City Pulse, Lansing’s alt-weekly newspaper. He covers the state of Michigan and also compiles the Midwest Energy News daily email digest. Andy is a graduate of Michigan State University’s Journalism School, where he focused on topics covered by the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism and wrote for the Great Lakes Echo. He was the 2008 and 2009 recipient of the Edward Meeman Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Student in Environmental Journalism at Michigan State.

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