Daily digest

AEP, Sierra Club uncertain how clean energy agreement would cost Ohio ratepayers

OHIO:
• Despite an agreement between AEP and the Sierra Club for the utility to build 900 megawatts of wind and solar as part of its income-guarantee proposal, neither sides know what that would cost ratepayers. (Columbus Business First)
A member of the state utility regulatory commission, who has been closely involved with utility income-guarantee requests, seeks to retain his seat against seven other challengers. (Columbus Business First)

UTILITIES: A utility CEO from Vermont says a focus on customer service has helped her company adapt to growth in distributed generation and other grid developments. (Midwest Energy News)

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COAL:
• President’s Obama call to halt new coal leases on public lands is “an opportunity for the U.S. to set a course for the next several decades.” (Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis)
Duke Energy and environmental groups agree on a timeline to stop burning coal at a southern Indiana plant. (Louisville Courier-Journal)
Coal supporters are skeptical that the federal government’s plans to help coal-dependent towns transition to clean energy jobs will be successful. (New York Times)

NUCLEAR: North Dakota officials are considering whether to allow scientists to study the possibility of storing spent nuclear waste in deep underground rock formations there. (Bismarck Tribune)

SOLAR:
• A Wisconsin-based commercial printing and finishing company has one of the largest solar installations in the state, which supplies about one-fourth of the company’s electric needs. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
• A Kansas utility is seeking participants for its first community solar project, which could include up to 10 megawatts if there is enough interest. (Topeka Capital-Journal)

RENEWABLES: While visiting Ohio, U.S. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy says states that are pushing back against clean energy are missing out on chances to revive their economy. (Associated Press)

EFFICIENCY:
• A new art installation at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport is aimed at challenging people to think about where energy comes from and how it’s used. (Minnesota Public Radio)
Within five years, a major Missouri utility wants to convert two-thirds of the streetlights it owns to LED. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

CLEAN POWER PLAN: The CEO of Ohio-based AEP says the utility’s complying with the Clean Power Plan will not be as difficult as originally planned. (USA Today)

HYDRO: Electric generation from dams on the Missouri River dropped below average in 2015 as engineers sought to balance water levels in the river system. (Rapid City Journal)

GRID:
• States in grid operator MISO’s footprint want the organization to focus on resource adequacy, capacity, demand response and cost allocations in 2016. (RTO Insider)
Regional grid operators will oversee $38 million from the federal government for modernization projects. (RTO Insider)

***SPONSORED LINK: Join dynamic CEO Mary Powell of Green Mountain Power, renewables thought leader James Tong, Wisconsin utilities, and renewable industry experts for “Shaping the Utility of the Future,” Thursday, January 21st in Madison, Wisconsin. ***

CYBERSECURITY: A satirical website gives a “poke to the security community” by listing various animals — including birds and squirrels — as potential threats to the grid. (EnergyWire)

COMMENTARY: A former regulatory commission chairman in Ohio who now advocates for independent power producers says the state should reject FirstEnergy’s and AEP’s income-guarantee requests. (Toledo Blade)

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