CARBON CAPTURE: The Department of Energy awards $84 million to 18 carbon-capture projects around the country; Ernest Moniz says “the technology is ready.” (Associated Press, The Hill)

EPA: An EPA “listening session” on carbon rules for power plants will be held in Chicago today, lawmakers from southern Illinois say it should have been held downstate. (Public News Service, Carbondale Southern)

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OIL: Bakken oil production is linked to an increase in haze-causing pollution in nearby Theodore Roosevelt National Park, an explosion at a North Dakota waste disposal facility spills 270 barrels of oil, and Enbridge will miss an EPA deadline for cleaning up the 2010 Kalamazoo River pipeline spill. (Greenwire, Bismarck Tribune, Michigan Radio)

EFFICIENCY: The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy released its state-by-state efficiency rankings this week – Illinois is the top state in the Midwest, followed by Minnesota, Iowa and Michigan. Meanwhile, energy officials in Nebraska dispute their state’s low ranking. (Climate Progress, Lincoln Journal Star)

ALSO: Chicago officials release a proposal that would allow a ratepayer surcharge to help pay for energy upgrades to municipal buildings. (Crain’s Chicago Business)

COAL: Ohio’s coal industry is shrinking, and environmental advocates fight expansion of a coal ash disposal site in Missouri. (WOSU, Springfield News-Leader)

TRANSMISSION: Kansas regulators sign off on the route for the Grain Belt Express transmission line, the project still awaits approval in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana. (Topeka Capital-Journal)

POLLUTION: Missouri, the Dakotas, and six other states file a brief opposing the EPA’s cross-state pollution rule. (The Hill)

SOLAR: Officials in an Indiana town are expected to approve a 1 MW solar farm next week. (Anderson Herald Bulletin)

NATURAL GAS: A Wisconsin company sees “significant growth” ahead in the use of natural gas to power over-the-road trucks. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

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TECHNOLOGY: High school students in Illinois build a solar-powered refinery to convert used cooking oil into biodiesel. (CBS Chicago)

WIND: A rest area near the Quad-Cities will be the first in Illinois to be powered by a wind turbine on site. (Quad-City 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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