RENEWABLES: Seven companies — including Wal-Mart, Target and General Motors — have indicated support for a proposed bill in Missouri that would allow them to bypass their utility and purchase power directly from a renewable generator. (Midwest Energy News)

• The U.S. Army secretary could issue a decision as early as Friday on the final permit needed to build the Dakota Access pipeline. (Reuters)
• North Dakota House lawmakers advance four bills that give law enforcement more tools to respond to Dakota Access protests and that stiffen penalties for some offenses. (Forum News Service)

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• As President Trump moves to revive coal and other fossil fuels, U.S. utilities are turning to solar as “both an opportunity and a defensive maneuver.” (Associated Press)
• A Minneapolis brewery looks to offset 120 percent of its energy use through solar. (WCCO)
• A major project planned in Wisconsin will help build the solar portfolio of a small Upper Peninsula utility. (Marquette Mining Journal)
• Officials in one Iowa county adopt new regulations for making it easier to develop commercial-scale solar. (Iowa State Daily)

GEOTHERMAL: A Minnesota-based company uses geothermal technology to act as a battery and store intermittent generation from wind and solar. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

EFFICIENCY: Officials in Lawrence, Kansas, are set to vote on a $11.3 million plan to make energy efficiency upgrades at various city facilities. (Lawrence Journal-World)

STORAGE: Federal regulators direct grid operator MISO to design more inclusive language for accommodating energy storage as part of its tariff. (RTO Insider)

FRAC SAND: A Wisconsin judge has delayed a decision on whether landowners can stop a proposed frac sand operation on grounds that it’s a nuisance. (LaCrosse Tribune)

• Federal regulators reject grid operator MISO’s plan for a three-year forward capacity auction, saying it would create too much price volatility and uncertainty. (RTO Insider)
• A Michigan researcher co-authors a study saying electricity providers may need a major capacity investment to guard against spikes in demand due to rising temperatures from climate change. (Climate Central)

• Advocates urge Nebraska lawmakers to develop a statewide climate action plan. (Lincoln Journal Star)
• Concerns grow over potential cuts to the U.S. Global Change Research Program, which produces the National Climate Assessment. (ClimateWire)

COMMENTARY: A southern Minnesota newspaper says state lawmakers should work together on improvements to a solar incentive program and changes to the state utility regulatory commission. (Mankato Free Press)

Andy Balaskovitz

Andy has been a journalism fellow for Midwest Energy News since 2014, following four years at City Pulse, Lansing’s alt-weekly newspaper. He covers the state of Michigan and also compiles the Midwest Energy News daily email digest. Andy is a graduate of Michigan State University’s Journalism School, where he focused on topics covered by the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism and wrote for the Great Lakes Echo. He was the 2008 and 2009 recipient of the Edward Meeman Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Student in Environmental Journalism at Michigan State.

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