Midwest Energy News

Enbridge: Oil decline doesn’t alter need for Line 3 replacement

PIPELINES: The oil market disruption from COVID-19 is a short-term challenge that doesn’t change the need to replace the Line 3 pipeline, Enbridge tells Minnesota regulators. (Star Tribune)

ALSO: The Trump administration makes it more difficult for states to challenge oil and gas pipeline projects under the federal Clean Water Act. (NPR)

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COAL:
Murray Energy’s bleak financial outlook is pushing Ohio’s nearly insolvent mine reclamation fund to the brink of collapse, experts warn. (E&E News, subscription)
• A former federal energy regulator says utilities’ use of self-scheduling for coal plants and resulting costs on customers should be addressed by state regulators, as is being examined in Minnesota, Missouri and Indiana. (Utility Dive)
• Some North Dakota officials want to find a new owner for the Coal Creek Station, which is scheduled to close in 2022, and use the site for carbon capture. (Bismarck Tribune)

SOLAR:
• An installation at a northwestern Wisconsin school is meant to supply half of the facility’s electricity and save $12,600 a year. (Superior Telegram)
• Ameren Missouri plans to expand its community solar program after recent approval by state regulators. (News Tribune)

UTILITIES:
• A former Wisconsin Senate minority leader joins Dairyland Power Cooperative as the utility’s government relations manager. (Wisconsin State Journal)
• Iowa utility MidAmerican Energy returned almost all of its 3,300 employees to company offices this week while most utilities take a more cautious approach as a result of the pandemic. (E&E News, subscription)

SMART METERS: Residents in a southeastern Iowa city say an effort by Alliant Energy to deploy smart meters conflicts with their spiritual beliefs. (Business Insider)

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EFFICIENCY: A federal study finds utility-run natural gas energy efficiency programs are cheaper than the fuel itself, which efficiency advocates say could lead to unnecessary infrastructure. (Utility Dive)

COMMENTARY:
• The Iowa Conservative Energy Forum says the state should “double down” on wind energy to help the post-pandemic economic recovery. (Mason City Globe Gazette)
• If Illinois leaders are serious about “promoting economic activity, creating jobs and helping protect consumers’ pocketbooks,” they should support investments in clean energy, an environmental group says. (Environmental Defense Fund)
• A state senator from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula says a recent energy task force report underscores the need for a Line 5 pipeline tunnel beneath the Straits of Mackinac. (Escanaba Daily Press)

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