Daily digest

Survey finds growing concern about climate among voters

CLIMATE: NOAA says 2014 was the hottest year on record. (Climate Central)

ALSO: A new survey finds rising concern about climate change among voters, as possible GOP presidential contender Mitt Romney says climate change is among the country’s top issues. (Washington Post, Gannett)

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MINNESOTA: While the state’s largest co-op is taking steps to cut carbon, advocates note it’s just barely meeting requirements in state law; meanwhile another Minnesota utility becomes one of the largest wind producers in the U.S. with completion of a new project. (Midwest Energy News, Duluth News Tribune)

UTILITIES: Customer groups object to We Energies’ proposed merger with Integrys. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

WISCONSIN: Environmental groups object to Gov. Scott Walker’s plan to sue over proposed EPA carbon regulations. (Associated Press)

OIL AND GAS:
• A pipeline rupture spills at least 42,000 gallons of crude into the Yellowstone River in eastern Montana. (Billings Gazette)
• Nebraska landowners file new legal challenges against developers of Keystone XL. (Bloomberg)
• A threatened bat species could complicate plans for a Minnesota pipeline. (Minnesota Public Radio)
• A North Dakota official says the state could lose millions in revenue if legislators void recent regulations. (Forum News Service)
• Full air testing results following an Ohio refinery blast have still not been released. (Columbus Dispatch)
• Two workers are injured in a fire at a North Dakota oil treater site. (Bismarck Tribune)
• A British company seeks to build a $200 million refinery in northeast Ohio. (Associated Press)

FRACKING: A company promoting a waterless fracking technique runs into financial trouble, and a Michigan author says her new novel, while fictional, highlights some real problems with the state’s fracking industry. (Columbus Business First, Midwest Energy News)

COAL: An Ohio coal operation is fined $650,000 for permit violations, Peabody Energy anticipates a turnaround in coal markets, and Illinois Basin production continues to increase. (Columbus Dispatch, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, SNL)

WIND: Nebraska lawmakers propose new incentives for wind energy. (Omaha World-Herald)

MICHIGAN: The outgoing mayor of Grand Rapids calls for further efforts on clean energy (more background here). (MLive, Midwest Energy News archive)

CHICAGO: The site of a closed coal plant could become a transit garage and a park. (Chicago Tribune)

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TECHNOLOGY: The University of Michigan’s solar car wins its first international competition. (MLive)

COMMENTARY: Some straight talk about artsy wind turbines. (Treehugger)

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