OHIO: Critics say an Ohio lawmaker’s latest attempt to weaken the state’s energy laws is a “giveaway” for utilities that flies in the face of consumer and business interests. (Midwest Energy News)

FERC: Nominee Ron Binz pulls his name from consideration to lead FERC amid strong opposition from coal-industry supporters in the Senate, describing the nomination process as “just a blood sport.” (Politico)

SHUTDOWN: The Energy Information Administration has enough cash to continue running through October 11; also, here’s last week’s story from SNL Financial explaining what will happen with the EPA and Energy Department. (Reuters, SNL)

SOLAR: Xcel Energy announces a plan to allow community “solar gardens” on its system in Minnesota, but energy developers say the utility isn’t paying enough for the power the systems will generate; and a decision by Wisconsin regulators means state solar incentives will remain suspended through the rest of the year. (Minneapolis Star Tribune, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

TRANSMISSION: A new transmission line to help move wind power out of Michigan’s “Thumb” region is operational. (CBS Detroit)

NUCLEAR: Lawmakers in Indiana, one of the few Midwest states without a nuclear power plant, consider small modular reactors; a new study says the smaller reactors may not be able to compete economically with other types of generation; and two Michigan lawmakers testify against a Canadian plan to store nuclear waste near Lake Huron. (Times of Northwest Indiana, FierceEnergy, MLive)

OIL: A plan to drill for oil in downtown Wichita is tabled for now, and real estate agents say they’re struggling to sell homes near the site of an Arkansas pipeline spill. (Wichita Eagle, Associated Press)

FRACKING: A new 38-mile pipeline to move natural gas products is proposed for northeast Ohio. (Columbus Dispatch)

ELECTRIC CARS: A Duluth hotel installs electric vehicle chargers in hopes of attracting travelers from the Twin Cities. (Duluth News Tribune)

MICHIGAN: Retired Vice Admiral Lee Gunn says he is “proud to see Michigan emerging as a leader in the areas of renewable energy and energy efficiency,” issues he says are critical to national security. (MLive)

GEOTHERMAL: Twin Cities suburbs that invested millions in geothermal systems a few years ago to cool ice rinks are mostly pleased with the resulting energy savings. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

COMMENTARY: Can Bob Inglis sway Republicans on climate change? (Greentech Media)

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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