Daily digest

Illinois pollution officials say not so fast on petcoke rules

PETCOKE: Amid pushback from industry, Illinois pollution officials reject emergency status for Gov. Pat Quinn’s proposed petcoke rules; the rules will proceed through the normal regulatory process. (Midwest Energy News, Associated Press)

OIL: The National Transportation Safety Board warns of the potential of a “major loss of life” if oil trains are not routed around populated areas, Union Pacific says it will treat crude oil like a toxic chemical, and Chicago’s mayor calls for a national fee to fund rail safety upgrades. (Minneapolis Star Tribune, Associated Press, Governing)

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KANSAS: The state’s renewable energy standard is under attack once again, this time led by the state’s Chamber of Commerce; meanwhile, a new poll shows broad public support for the law. (EnergyWire, Topeka Capital-Journal)

GRID: The heavily natural gas-dependent PJM Interconnection faces soaring electricity prices as persistent cold weather drives demand and prices higher. (Greenwire)

MEANWHILE: Propane prices also soar, prompting Iowa leaders to call for a federal investigation. (Des Moines Register)

WIND: The National Audubon Society says it is “between a rock and a hard place” over plans to extend “take” permits protecting wind farms from prosecution over bird deaths. (National Journal)

ELECTRIC CARS: A new study finds a large number of electric vehicles could provide a cost-effective tool to manage the grid. (New York Times)

COAL: The League of Conservation Voters asks an Illinois congressman to return a campaign donation after he signs on to a bill designed to weaken EPA regulations, and a hearing officer rules against an Illinois landowner fighting a plan to inject coal mine waste underground. (The Hill, Illinois Times)

BIOFUELS: The EPA says it will reconsider its cellulosic ethanol target, and Missouri lawmakers consider a bill to prevent E15 from being sold in the state. (Des Moines Register, Associated Press)

CLIMATE: Industries are starting to see the impact of climate change on their bottom line, and a climate science wins a key ruling in his defamation case against a conservative publication. (New York Times, Mother Jones)

TRANSPORTATION: Iowa is running out of money for roads. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)

COMMENTARY: David Suzuki says rail vs. pipeline is the wrong question. (DeSmogBlog)

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