PIPELINES: Clean energy advocates dispute the state of Michigan’s official position that there is “inadequate information” to justify pursuing a court order to shut down a pipeline in the Straits of Mackinac. (Midwest Energy News)

ALSO:
• Developers of the Dakota Access pipeline agree to halt construction near a tribal reservation in North Dakota until a federal court hearing next week. (Associated Press)
• Native American protesters say they will attempt to block construction of Dakota Access “for as long as it takes.” (The Guardian)

***SPONSORED LINK: EnergyStorage Global Innovation Forum, September 12-13 in Chicago brings together top experts from ComEd, Oncor, PowerStream, PJM, Midwest ISO, ARPA-E, Argonne National Lab and many others to examine grid-level and behind-the-meter storage business models, technology innovations and opportunities. Visit www.esinnovationforum.com ***

POLITICS: New tax filings show a utility-backed advocacy group in Michigan spent $7.4 million last year — mostly on TV ads — to influence energy policy in the state. (Michigan Campaign Finance Network)

SOLAR:
• Kansas regulators launch an investigation into the costs and benefits of distributed generation after the state’s largest utility sought to limit the scope to just the costs. (Utility Dive)
• Experts expected the number of requests to increase fixed charges on distributed generation customers to decline this year, but they have remained relatively stable. (Utility Dive)
• A 2.6-megawatt solar project began operating in Indiana this week. (South Bend Tribune)

OIL AND GAS: Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder says plans for two new natural-gas powered generating stations in the Upper Peninsula to replace an aging coal plant will be “really environmentally sensitive.” (Fox UP)

WIND: Kansas-based developers plan a 200-turbine wind project in Iowa. (Radio Iowa)

FRACKING: A group of law professors and lawyers for the federal government say a judge was wrong to block new rules for hydraulic fracturing on public land. (Associated Press)

COAL: North Dakota coal plants, which run largely on lignite, have held steady compared to other states. (Prairie Public News)

BIOFUELS: The U.S. EPA’s Inspector General says the agency has not complied with federal requirements to issue a report every three years on the effects of the nationwide biofuel use standard. (Reuters)

GRID: The U.S. power grid has been able to function recently without major problems, despite record-setting temperatures and unprecedented demand. (EnergyWire)

***SPONSORED LINK: The 15th annual Illinois Renewable Energy and Sustainability Fair will be held Aug. 20-21 at the Ogle County Fairgrounds in Oregon, Illinois. Events include speakers, exhibits, children’s activities, music, food, and more.www.illinoisrenew.org***

COMMENTARY:
• Another reason to be outraged that Michigan has not yet shut down a pipeline through the Straits of Mackinac: “You and I are subsidizing Enbridge to maintain and operate Line 5.” (5 Lakes Energy)
• A new form of biomass made from agricultural waste can help the Midwest reduce its carbon emissions. (Northwest Indiana Post-Tribune)

CORRECTION: An item in Thursday’s digest incorrectly said where a Wisconsin county has delayed discussion on local wind turbines. It is in eastern Wisconsin.

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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