COAL: A new analysis of federal data finds U.S. economically recoverable coal reserves are wildly overestimated, and may tap out as soon as 20 years from now. (Midwest Energy News)

MEANWHILE: Residents of a small Illinois town worry about the fate of a coal plant their economy depends on. (Associated Press)

***SPONSORED LINK: Clean Energy Trust seeks the Midwest’s best researchers, entrepreneurs and students with innovative ideas. Apply now for the $500,000 2014 Clean Energy Challenge. Applications due: Jan 8. Final pitch in Chicago: April 3. ***

‘PETKOCH’: Chicago’s mayor proposes a requirement that the city’s now-infamous petroleum coke piles be enclosed, while two alderman introduce an ordinance that would prohibit storing petcoke in the city entirely. (Chicago Tribune)

WIND: Neighbors of a Wisconsin wind farm testify in favor of a bill making it easier for them to sue, with one saying wind projects should not “have the right to take our sleep away.” (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

ALSO: A reporter for Good Morning America takes a closer look at “wind turbine syndrome” claims in Massachusetts, a report finds Iowa’s wind farms reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 8 million tons per year, and Minnesota advocates lobby for extension of the production tax credit. (ABC News, Des Moines Register, Minnesota Public Radio)

• The wife of a North Dakota farmer who discovered a 20,000 barrel pipeline spill says she “didn’t realize there were such lax regulations.” (Fargo Forum)
• An environmental group warns against shipping oil on the Great Lakes. (Duluth News Tribune)
• TransCanada says rejection of Keystone XL will result in more rail shipments of crude, which he calls a “tragedy.” (CBC News)
• Construction of an Indiana pipeline is delayed. (Times of Northwest Indiana)
• Enbridge stops waiting for EPA approval, begins dredging the Kalamazoo River. (MLive)

FRACKING: Natural gas production in Ohio rose 18 percent from 2011 to 2012, and Illinois officials schedule three additional hearings on fracking regulations. (Columbus Business First, Associated Press)

CLIMATE: The National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners wants the EPA to give states broad discretion to determine how they meet new carbon emission rules. (The Hill)

OHIO: American Electric Power backs a measure to weaken Ohio’s renewable energy law, while the bill’s sponsor calls opponents “enviro-socialist rent-seekers.” (Columbus Dispatch)

MICHIGAN: A new report explores the pros and cons of expanding electricity choice in Michigan, but offers no policy recommendations. (Detroit Free Press)

***SPONSORED LINK: Tonight! Visionary energy entrepreneur Jigar Shah will discuss his new book, Creating Climate Wealth, at a free event at Macalester College in St. Paul. Click here to register. ***

POLLUTION: An environmental group in Muscatine, Iowa, says the state isn’t moving fast enough to clean up emissions in their town. Midwest Energy News highlighted the town’s pollution struggle in 2011. (

COMMENTARY: Why carbon capture is a “mythical distraction.” (The Energy Collective)

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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