Midwest Energy News

FirstEnergy Solutions bankruptcy wouldn’t honor union contracts

UTILITIES: FirstEnergy Solutions tells a bankruptcy court that it won’t honor existing union contracts, which means power plant workers who helped lobby for the recent Ohio bailout bill could lose traditional pensions if a judge agrees to the utility’s restructuring plan. (Utility Dive)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Iowa’s electric vehicle charger network is poised for growth as MidAmerican Energy plans a fast-charger network. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)

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GRID: DTE Energy has had the second-highest rate increases among U.S. utilities since 2015, yet its grid reliability is below average, according to a recent report from consumer advocates. (Detroit Free Press)

• South Dakota tribal leaders request a hearing on a plan to double the Dakota Access Pipeline’s capacity. (Sioux Falls Argus Leader)
• The explosion of an Enbridge pipeline in Kentucky prompts safety questions about the company’s pipelines in Wisconsin and the Upper Midwest. (Wisconsin Public Radio)
• Former Vice President Al Gore says replacing the Line 3 pipeline is “not a good project” in a talk in Minneapolis about climate risks. (MinnPost)

RENEWABLES: An advanced energy advocacy group says Michigan businesses have unmet renewable energy demand because utilities charge too much for voluntary programs. (Michigan Radio)

• An Illinois college plans to install solar panels that will supply 40% of its annual electricity use and save tens of thousands of dollars. (Southern Illinoisan)
• Dozens of Kansas City businesses and residences have installed solar panels over the past year ahead of federal tax credits expiring. (KCTV)

• An international affairs council official says weakening clean energy goals in a bill to subsidize nuclear and coal plants alienates clean energy supporters and undermines the growing coalition of nuclear backers. (Utility Dive)
• Ohio wind advocates thank lawmakers for removing a provision in the bill that would have allowed for a local referendum on wind projects after it was already approved. (Norwalk Reflector)
• A growing number of U.S. businesses increase their renewable energy commitments, helping them maintain an edge over competition, a Forbes columnist says.
• The director of Columbus, Ohio’s Smart Cities project says the city is taking a multi-pronged approach to boost electric vehicle adoption, and the efforts are paying off. (Transmission & Distribution World)

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