Daily digest

Moniz, McCarthy say climate rules won’t kill coal

COAL: At a congressional hearing on climate policy, Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz and EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy say upcoming emissions rules will “provide certainty” to the coal industry. (Reuters)

ALSO: A new study finds that if social costs are accounted for, coal is a less economical energy source than wind or solar; and analysts say global coal markets are entering a long-term decline. (ClimateWire, Associated Press)

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COAL, CTD: Dynegy, which is acquiring Ameren’s five Illinois coal plants, rejects a mining company’s offer to help pay for pollution upgrades, a judge says an Indiana mine failed to adequately study how much pollution it was releasing into state waterways, and activists press a Nebraska utility to shut down a coal plant in Omaha. (St. Louis Business Journal, Indianapolis Star, Omaha World-Herald)

CLIMATE: At the aforementioned climate hearing, activists donned tin-foil hats to protest some Congress members’ rejection of climate science, conservative groups aggressively work to discredit a forthcoming IPCC report, and Sen. Mitch McConnell proposes a new bill to block EPA carbon rules for power plants. (Mining.com, InsideClimate News, The Hill)

UTILITIES: As more private companies generate their own power, it’s creating a revenue problem for utilities; and the Minnesota Supreme Court rules that regulators can consider “rate shock” when evaluating utility rate cases. (Wall Street Journal, Minnesota Public Radio)

BIOFUELS: Federal officials say an Indiana biofuel company was at the center of a $100 million tax and securities fraud scheme, perhaps the largest such case in state history. (Indianapolis Star)

FRACKING: An Ohio town repeals its fracking ban amid concerns from labor unions that the law would discourage business investment. (Youngstown Vindicator)

EFFICIENCY: The Sierra Club launches a campaign against FirstEnergy for its opposition to Ohio’s energy efficiency requirements. (Columbus Dispatch)

WIND: An rural Illinois county sees a big payback from a wind farm. (WQAD)

OIL: Despite pipeline expansions, rail companies are investing heavily in equipment to transport crude. (Bloomberg)

GERMANY: The New York Times looks at Germany’s renewable energy transition, where “sloppy and uncoordinated” implementation is leading to sharply higher energy bills for some residents.

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TRANSPORTATION: Electric vehicle charging stations will be installed in downtown Toledo. (Toledo Blade)

COMMENTARY: A Minnesota farmer says the impact on family farms from a proposed Enbridge pipeline “varies from disheartening to devastating,” and how bad for the environment are gasoline-powered leaf blowers? (Duluth News Tribune, Washington Post)

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