Daily digest

Feds hold off on plans to drill in Ohio state forest

FRACKING: A federal plan to open an Ohio state forest to drilling is put on hold as state officials say they weren’t aware of it. (Columbus Dispatch)

UTILITIES: What if instead of offering electricity by the kilowatt hour, utilities sold light, cooling and screen time? That radical idea is being discussed at two events in Minnesota today. (Midwest Energy News)

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OHIO: State regulators will decide today whether FirstEnergy overpaid for renewable energy credits, potentially generating millions in rebates for ratepayers. (Associated Press, Midwest Energy News)

OIL: Enbridge will begin an EPA-ordered dredging project on the Kalamazoo River in Michigan, in ongoing efforts to clean up a 2010 pipeline spill, and railroads resist efforts to require safety retrofits of older tanker cars. (MLive.com, Associated Press)

FRAC SAND: With the sand mining boom in full swing, Wisconsin towns are divided on the impacts. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

COAL: A ballot measure in Missouri targets tax breaks for companies that do business with Peabody Coal, lower coal costs mean a lower-than-expected rate increase for a Wisconsin utility, and a bill limiting the EPA’s ability to regulate coal ash is likely dead on arrival in the U.S. Senate. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The Hill)

ALSO: North Dakota ratepayers allow Otter Tail Power to continue charging ratepayers for the cost of the never-built Big Stone II coal plant. (Bismarck Tribune)

EPA: Gina McCarthy says climate rules can help boost the economy, and the agency submits final rules to the White House for cooling water intakes at power plants. (Greenwire)

MEANWHILE: The Koch brothers hire a lobbying firm to encourage a House resolution declaring a carbon tax “detrimental to American families and businesses.” (The Hill)

SOLAR: Work beings on replacing a marble facade of the Milwaukee Public Museum with solar panels, and major solar projects are among Xcel Energy’s Minnesota renewable energy grant recipients. (Milwaukee Business Journal, Minnesota Public Radio)

BIOFUELS: An Iowa biodiesel producer posts a $23 million profit, and an research project in Minnesota explores the potential of camelina as a biofuel feedstock. (Des Moines Register, Minnesota Public Radio)

WIND: Residents of a rural North Dakota county, outside the reach of the oil boom, debate the merits of a proposed wind farm. (Dickinson Press)

NATURAL GAS: Ford will begin offering an F-150 that can be easily converted to run on natural gas, in response to a push by the governors of Colorado and Oklahoma. (Denver Business Journal)

COMMENTARY: Despite a slowdown, coal emissions remain a global threat. (Grist)

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