Daily digest

NREL: Benefits from renewables far outweigh costs

RENEWABLES: A new federal study finds fuel savings and emissions benefits from renewable energy significantly outweigh costs associated with increased cycling of fossil fuel plants. (Greentech Media)

SOLAR: A U.S. solar group offers a plan to avert a trade war with China. (Associated Press)

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OIL & GAS: A Wisconsin-made engine could help drilling operations reduce flaring by powering their equipment with natural gas instead of diesel, and an analyst says low gas prices have slowed the pace of drilling in Ohio. (Midwest Energy News, Cleveland Plain Dealer)

ALSO: Democratic politicians embrace fracking despite strong opposition from some environmental groups. (Washington Post)

COAL: EPA carbon rules could doom a controversial plan to build a new coal plant in western Kansas. (Topeka Capital Journal)

PRAIRIE STATE: The mayor of an Ohio town that is considering asking the state attorney general to investigate its Prairie State contract says he doesn’t want the town’s troubles “to be the political tool of extreme environmentalists.” (Mansfield News Journal)

MICHIGAN: An audit finds a state agency responsible for energy-related grants gave inflated job numbers to the state legislature. (MLive)

BIOFUELS: A Michigan senator calls for an investigation into suspected manipulation of the ethanol credit market. (The Hill)

NUCLEAR: A Bill Gates-backed startup makes progress toward a nuclear reactor that can run on spent fuel. (New York Times)

WIND: Wind industry representatives say proposed changes to Ohio’s renewable energy law could harm the state’s manufacturing sector. (Columbus Dispatch)

KEYSTONE XL: A judge will hear arguments this week in a lawsuit challenging Nebraska legislation approving a new pipeline route. (Omaha World-Herald)

MINNESOTA: At a Tea Party event in central Minnesota, two GOP candidates for governor say the state should burn more fossil fuels, with one saying climate change “is a political movement, not a scientific one.” (St. Cloud Times)

EFFICIENCY: A Michigan utility’s appliance recycling program claims its 75,000th refrigerator. (MLive)

COMMENTARY: An Australian study strikes another blow to the “wind turbine syndrome” argument. (ClimateProgress)

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