Midwest Energy News

Enbridge again leads political lobbying in Minnesota

RENEWABLES: A new Illinois bill would increase the state’s renewable portfolio standard and let utilities raise rates to pay for needed investments to support the goal. (Energy News Network)

ALSO: Clean energy advocates are disappointed that the mayor of Fort Wayne, Indiana, hasn’t called for Indiana Michigan Power to increase its renewable energy portfolio. (Fort Wayne Journal Gazette)

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POLITICS: Enbridge spent $11 million in 2018 — more than double the year before — on lobbying Minnesota regulators in support of the Line 3 pipeline project. (Minnesota Public Radio)

SOLAR:
• A television ad in Iowa backs a bill for a fee on solar customers, saying they don’t pay their fair share to use the grid. (KCRG)
• Five Midwestern metropolitan areas are in the top 20 for solar jobs growth, according to new statistics from an industry group. (Solar Power World)

WIND:
• A proposed bill in Nebraska blocking private companies from using eminent domain to their advantage may get reconsideration. (Lincoln Journal Star)
• County officials delay a vote on a proposed development agreement for a southeastern Minnesota wind project. (Albert Lea Tribune)

SMART METERS: Kansas regulators find that requiring utility opt-out programs for smart meters would be difficult and costly. (Utility Dive)

COAL: Illinois and Missouri receive more than $21 million from the federal government to clean up abandoned coal mines. (WSIL)

POWER PLANTS: A White House economic report revives the potential for a federal program to bail out coal and nuclear plants. (E&E News, subscription)

SMART GRID: Ameren Missouri is spending about $2.5 million to replace poles and add smart grid technology to improve reliability in St. Louis-area communities. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

***SPONSORED LINK: Network and learn about cutting-edge energy topics at Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council’s 7th Annual Member Meeting. Google’s Vince Faherty to keynote. April 23 in East Lansing, MI. Register today before it’s sold out!***

OIL & GAS: A tank leak causes 420 gallons of oil and 12,600 gallons of saltwater to spill at a well in northwestern North Dakota. (Associated Press)

COMMENTARY:
• A solar developer cites Michigan research showing the state’s large investor-owned utilities use regulatory and political maneuvers to block distributed generation. (PV Magazine)
• An Ohio editorial board says Gov. Mike DeWine’s proposal to boost funding for coal-mine reclamation by $5 million “rights a wrong” by the previous administration. (Columbus Dispatch)
• A Minnesota-based landscape restoration company says communities benefit when pollinator-friendly habitats are required alongside solar projects. (St. Cloud Times)
• A Vox writer cites Minneapolis’ strong energy efficiency programs and utility partnerships as an avenue to address climate change.

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