Daily digest

Bill to extend Ohio’s clean energy freeze is in the works

OHIO: A legislative proposal to extend Ohio’s clean energy freeze could surface as early as next week. (Columbus Dispatch)

PIPELINES:
• A coalition of environmental and tribal groups call on Michigan officials to shut down Enbridge’s pipeline through the Straits of Mackinac because they allege the company is violating multiple terms of its original operating agreement. (Detroit Free Press)
• A group of federal agencies wants the Army Corps of Engineers to more carefully review its plan for the Dakota Access pipeline. (Associated Press)
Some Iowa landowners say the state’s allowing the Dakota Access developer to use eminent domain for the project runs counter to a 2006 state law. (The Gazette)
North Dakota regulators visit the site of the state’s largest oil spill that prompted calls for tighter regulations. (Forum News Service)

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CLEAN ENERGY: A group of startup companies competed for $1 million in prize money for innovative clean energy projects meant to help developing nations as well as modernize the U.S. grid. (Midwest Energy News)

COAL:
• The Peabody bankruptcy heightens awareness of mining reclamation challenges.  (Associated Press)
The bankruptcy could affect more than a thousand employees across Indiana. (Indiana Public Media)
This week marks the final days for two West Michigan coal plants. (MLive, WZZM-TV)
A decrease in coal shipments has led a railroad company to furlough 73 employees in Nebraska. (Omaha World-Herald)

WIND: Residents in a Wisconsin county will continue to raise health concerns about a nearby wind project, despite a recent state study finding no evidence to support such claims. (Associated Press)

EFFICIENCY: New research shows that while separating utilities’ sales and revenues leads to more spending and saving on efficiency, decoupling should be complemented by efficiency resource standards and demand-side incentives. (Utility Dive)

NEBRASKA: State lawmakers pass measures seeking to boost wind development in the state as well as study potential effects of climate change. (Lincoln Journal Star)

TRANSPORTATION: An Illinois lawmaker proposes a 1.5-cent-per-mile tax to help fund road repairs as gas tax revenue declines due to fuel efficient and electric vehicles. (WLS-TV)

SOLAR: An Iowa city looks to revamp proposed regulations on solar panels installed at homes and businesses. (Des Moines Register)

UTILITIES: A consumer advocacy group in Ohio seeks to ban “submeter” companies that resell utility services. (Columbus Dispatch)

GRID: Missouri lawmakers look to follow Illinois’ lead in adopting energy policy to strengthen the grid while reducing rates. (Missouri Times)

FRAC SAND:
• Local officials in a southeast Minnesota county consider a ban on frac sand mining. (Winona Post)
A majority of attendees at the Conservation Congress in Wisconsin vote for a moratorium on new state permits for frac sand mines. (Wisconsin Public Radio)

CORPORATE SUSTAINABILITY: Speakers at an annual sustainability summit in Wisconsin say corporations should look at the interconnectedness of water scarcity, climate change, energy use and food production when pursuing sustainability goals. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

CONGRESS: A federal energy modernization bill is moving forward without any potential funding for Flint, Michigan’s water crisis. (CNN)

COMMENTARY:
• The policy of self-bonding “has been a failure” and will feature more prominently as the coal industry continues to decline. (New York Times)
It’s good for the markets that Peabody filed for bankruptcy because it “lets investors get a more transparent look at what’s going on” in the industry. (Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis)
As the coal industry declines, the Sierra Club says “we can’t leave behind the communities and families that have long relied on the coal industry.” (EcoWatch)
Retrofitting old buildings will need to play a major role in order to reduce the energy use among the U.S. building stock. (Forbes)

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