POLITICS: The conservative policy group ALEC plans to make repealing state renewable energy standards a “high priority” in the coming year, and has revealed the model legislation it will use. (Midwest Energy News)

ALSO: Oil field workers, who can vote in North Dakota as long as they’ve lived there for 30 days, may become a key voting bloc in this year’s election. (Associated Press)

CLIMATE: A new report warns that current emissions are on a track consistent with projections of 6°C warming by the end of the century, and a poll finds most Americans are unwilling to pay significantly higher energy costs to prevent climate change. (Reuters, Huffington Post)

FRACKING: Frac sand mining takes off in Missouri, and officials investigating reports of water contamination in Pennsylvania omitted toxic chemicals from their report. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch, New York Times)

SPLITSVILLE: American Electric Power takes steps to divide its Ohio operations into two entities — one that sells power and another that operates power plants. (Columbus Dispatch)

EFFICIENCY: Millions of dollars in energy-saving federal grants targeted for three Wisconsin cities remain unspent, and Topeka considers a $3 million energy conservation project. (Wisconsin State Journal, Topeka Capital Journal)

WIND: A report finds the cost of operating wind farms has fallen 38 percent over the past four years. (Bloomberg)

OIL: Landowners along pipeline routes in North Dakota are “experiencing exhaustion” as operators scramble to keep up with the boom. (Grand Forks Herald)

TRANSPORTATION: Sales surge for the Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf, Consumer Reports says the Toyota Prius C is the most reliable car of 2012, and Automobile Magazine names the Tesla Model S its Car of the Year. (AutoBlog Green, CNN)

COMMENTARY: Why China’s demand may not be enough to save the American coal industry, and did Hurricane Sandy make the case for clean energy? (Grist, Christian Science Monitor)

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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