• An Arizona utility claims it is absorbing an average of $67 per month in costs for each solar array in its territory. (Phoenix Business Journal)
• A consortium of nonprofits in Massachusetts signs a deal with a solar company to develop small-scale projects. (Boston Globe)
• Mississippi regulators extend their timeframe for studying net metering. (Mississippi Business Journal)

• A new study links proximity to fracking operations with an increased risk of premature birth. (Tulsa World)
• California regulators acknowledge multiple failures in overseeing oil and gas operations in the Los Angeles basin. (Los Angeles Times)

• A judge approves a West Virginia businessman’s plan to buy certain Patriot Coal assets and launch a unique reforestation venture with carbon credits. (The Roanoke Times)
• Several West Virginia counties are divided over whether to take federal aid to diversify their coal-dependent economies. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)
• Parties involved with the Patriot Coal bankruptcy back off a plan that would have diverted $18 million for health insurance from retired Indiana coal miners. (ProPublica)
Why federal prosecutors are leaning on fraud to take down coal boss Don Blankenship. (SNL)

• California Gov. Jerry Brown signs a bill requiring the state’s pension funds to divest from coal. (Los Angeles Times)
• Advocates push for a ballot measure in Washington state that would establish a carbon fee for polluters. (Puget Sound Business Journal)

CLEAN POWER PLAN: Rather than close certain coal-fired power plants, North Carolina may push utilities to increase their efficiency to meet its Clean Power Plan targets. (EnergyWire)

NUCLEAR: Republican lawmakers in Wisconsin look to end the state’s 32-year-old ban on the construction of new nuclear plants. (LaCrosse Tribune)

GRID: Federal regulators are investigating whether market manipulation took place at a capacity auction earlier this year that spiked prices in eastern and southern Illinois. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

UTILITIES: Exelon agrees to establish a corporate presence in Washington D.C. to secure a $6.8 billion merger with Pepco. (Chicago Business Journal)

POLITICS: Democrats plan to filibuster a popular federal energy bill as part of an ongoing standoff with Republicans over budget negotiations. (E&E Daily)

EFFICIENCY: A new program in Chicago aims to help residents install one million “smart” thermostats. (Midwest Energy News)

ENERGY STORAGE:municipal utility in southern Kentucky taps energy storage devices to reduce emissions during times of peak power demand. (Transmission & Distribution World)

TECHNOLOGY: General Electric is spinning off a new company to develop new energy technologies. (New York Times)

WASTE-TO-ENERGY: Washington D.C.’s water utility is the first in North America to use new technology from Norway to convert sewage sludge into electricity. (Washington Post)

COMMENTARY: Low-income communities that have borne the brunt of pollution deserve better access to clean energy. (Sacramento Bee)

Ken is the director of the Energy News Network at Fresh Energy and is a founding editor of both Midwest Energy News and Southeast Energy News. Prior to joining Fresh Energy, he was the managing editor for online news at Minnesota Public Radio. He started his journalism career in 2002 as a copy editor for the Duluth News Tribune before spending five years at the Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington, where he worked as a copy editor, online producer, features editor and night city editor. A Nebraska native, Ken has a bachelor's degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a master's degree from the University of Oregon. He is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors.

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