TRANSMISSION: Michigan lawmakers push a plan to improve the electrical connection between the Upper and Lower peninsulas. (Midwest Energy News)

EFFICIENCY: Minneapolis and Chicago are again among the top U.S. cities for energy efficiency, according to a new report; other Midwest cities, such as St. Louis, remain below average. (Midwest Energy News, St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

***SPONSORED LINK: Learn about the latest in renewable energy and sustainability in Central Wisconsin at The Energy Fair, June 19-21. Features include keynote speaker John Wellinghoff, workshops, exhibitors, entertainment, and more.***

OIL: North Dakota’s new oil tax law could threaten a revenue-sharing agreement with the Three Affiliated Tribes. (Associated Press)

• Iowa landowners rally at the state capitol to support tougher restrictions on eminent domain. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)
• Congressional Republicans want to turn over approval of natural gas pipelines to the Interior Department. (The Hill)

NATURAL GAS: Illinois regulators say a utility has mismanaged a program to replace natural gas pipelines beneath Chicago streets. (Chicago Tribune)

WIND: A Wisconsin brewery enters an agreement to purchase 100 percent of its power from wind. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

• Ethanol backers launch an initiative focusing on the public health benefits of the fuel. (Greenwire)
• A proposal to expand ethanol use in Chicago is still alive after a sweep of other pending legislation. (Chicago Tribune)

SOLAR: A series of workshops will help Wisconsin farmers learn more about solar power. (Wisconsin Ag Connection)

NUCLEAR: An Illinois nuclear plant is back online after a scheduled refueling outage. (Bloomington Pantagraph)

GRID: An Ohio utility unveils its new squirrel-proof substation. (Transmission & Distribution World)

TECHNOLOGY: Can waste heat be effectively converted into electricity? (Greentech Media)

COMMENTARY: How new technology will greatly accelerate the spread of wind energy. (NRDC Switchboard)

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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