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EFFICIENCY: How “ESP” is helping Kansas City become an innovation leader in energy efficiency. (Midwest Energy News)

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OHIO: State Sen. Bill Seitz, who has compared Ohio’s clean energy laws to Stalinism, will sit on the legislative committee to review their effectiveness; Cleveland emerges as a cleantech leader even as the state retreats on renewable energy; and a poll finds most Ohioans oppose a utility rate plan criticized as a “bailout” for old coal plants. (Columbus Business First, InsideClimate News, Public News Service)

COAL: A Minnesota utility will idle four coal-fired units because of rail shipping problems, and a keynote at the Illinois Mining Institute’s annual meeting says coal “is the most promising fuel of the future right now.” (KBJR, Carbondale Southern Illinoisan)

EPA: A group of utilities files a legal challenge to EPA cooling water rules, states that are suing to block EPA carbon rules are working to implement them anyway, and North Dakota expects significant challenges adapting to carbon limits. (SNL, Climate Central, Forum News Service)

PIPELINES: Minnesota regulators order further study of a proposed new pipeline from North Dakota, and Nebraska schools benefit from Keystone XL land arrangements. (Minneapolis Star Tribune, Lincoln Journal Star)

SOLAR: Missouri’s Supreme Court will hear arguments over whether a utility is exempt from the state’s solar standard, and a St. Louis company is selected to be the lead contractor for Chicago’s solar program. (EnergyWire, St. Louis Business Journal)

CLIMATE: Economists say the Midwest is ideal for a carbon market, and the CEO of Royal Dutch Shell says the debate over climate change “has gone into la-la land.” (Minnesota Public Radio, Washington Post)

UTILITIES: ComEd says it wants customers to control their energy data, and Wisconsin Energy faces criticism from industry over proposed rate increases. (Chicago Tribune, Milwaukee Business Journal)

POLITICS: Advocates brief Wisconsin candidates on renewable energy, and several city officials in a Chicago suburb resign amid controversy over a power plant plan. (Madison Capital Times, Chicago Daily Herald)

GRID: The FBI says an attack on a California substation wasn’t terrorism: “We don’t think this was a sophisticated attack.” (The Hill)

FRAC SAND: Three new frac sand mines are proposed in Wisconsin, one would be the largest in the U.S. at 2,000 acres. (Chippewa Herald)

COMMENTARY: How cost overruns at a Minnesota nuclear plant show the weaknesses of large-scale generation. (Institute for Local Self-Reliance)

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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