POLITICS: In Tampa, Republicans say Democrats are trying to “steer the conversation away from energy,” the GOP platform slams the military for focusing on geopolitical impacts of climate change. (Greenwire, The Hill)

ALSO: A Romney spokesman says neither the campaign nor the Secret Service requested the shutdown of an Ohio coal mine whose workers were required to take time off without pay to attend a rally. (Columbus Dispatch)

FOOD VS. FUEL: Should the EPA waive ethanol mandates to help control costs for food producers? We talk with an ethanol producer, a turkey farmer and a biosystems professor for three perspectives on the debate. (Midwest Energy News)

TRANSPORTATION: The White House finalizes new fuel economy standards of 54.5 mpg by 2025, and the EPA rejects a petition from biofuel producers to reconsider its rules raising mileage standards for heavy trucks. (Associated Press, Courthouse News)

CHEVY VOLT: More Chevy Volt rumors began swirling after reports that GM will shut down a Michigan assembly plant for four weeks this fall. But GM says the shutdown is to retool for production of the newly redesigned Impala, and has nothing to do with Volt sales, which are up significantly over last year. (USA Today)

SOLAR: Minnesota’s Department of Commerce says it will reject Xcel Energy’s plan to drop its Solar Rewards program; and the state’s largest solar array, atop a Twin Cities Ikea store, goes online. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

WIND: A Chicago produce company says the massive wind turbine it build on the city’s South Side will pay for itself within 10 years. (Chicagoist)

TECHNOLOGY: Why the University of Wisconsin is “Disneyland” for electrical innovation. (EE News)

POLLUTION: EPA and Iowa DNR officials hold a meeting in Muscatine to hear residents’ concerns about air pollution. (KWQC-TV)

COMMENTARY: Sean Lennon (yes, that Sean Lennon) pens an anti-fracking op-ed for  the New York Times.

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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