Midwest Energy News

FirstEnergy CEO fired; two plea deals mark latest in Ohio energy scandal

OHIO: Two of the five people charged in a corruption scheme over power plant bailout legislation strike a plea deal with prosecutors, moving the scandal “from allegation to admitted fact,” Attorney General Dave Yost said. (Columbus Dispatch)

ALSO:
• FirstEnergy fires CEO Chuck Jones and two senior officials effective immediately amid investigations into the company’s role in the scheme. (Cleveland.com)
• Critics say FirstEnergy and state lawmakers are shielding voters from understanding more about the scandal before Election Day. (Eye on Ohio / Energy News Network)

SOLAR:
• Six months after the Kansas Supreme Court threw out an Evergy electricity fee only for customers with solar panels, the utility has come back with a new “grid access fee” that critics say also discriminates. (Energy News Network)
• AEP plans to buy the output from a 200 MW solar project under development in central Ohio. (Renewables Now)

UTILITIES:
• Alliant Energy plans to transition to 50% renewables in Iowa in the next three years by adding 400 MW of solar, closing a coal plant and transitioning another coal plant to run on natural gas. (Radio Iowa)
• Xcel Energy reports increased quarterly profits as residential sales increase during the pandemic, and also plans to spend $1.4 billion in additional wind and solar projects in the first half of 2021. (Star Tribune, S&P Global)
• Consumers Energy reports that electricity sales rebounded in the third quarter and that its “growth strategy” calls for $6 billion in renewable energy investments by 2040. (S&P Global)
• Dayton Power and Light names new president and CEO Kristina Lund, who has worked for the utility’s parent company AES for nearly 15 years, most recently as chief product officer for carbon-free energy. (Dayton Daily News)
• DTE Energy’s plan to spin off its non-utility assets follows a trend of other major utilities. (Utility Dive)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Ford plans to unveil an electric transit van next month: “We’re betting on a full lineup of commercial electrified vehicles,” says CEO Jim Farley. (Detroit Free Press)

CLEAN TECH: A Midwest energy research consortium selects six new startups for funding that involve energy storage, thermal energy, transportation and converting carbon waste to energy. (WisconsinInno)

COAL: Indiana environmental groups challenge the extension of an air quality permit for a planned coal-to-diesel plant that hasn’t started construction. (Indiana Environmental Reporter)

OIL & GAS: 100 barrels of oil and 420 barrels of brine spill from a well site in North Dakota. (Bismarck Tribune)

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