Midwest Energy News

FirstEnergy spent $50M to sway lawmakers, public on nuclear plants

UTILITIES: FirstEnergy spent nearly $50 million on lobbying and public relations to influence debates over nuclear bailouts in Ohio and Pennsylvania, a utility watchdog group finds. (Toledo Blade)

PIPELINES: Minnesota regulators urge the state Supreme Court to deny challenges by opponents of Enbridge’s Line 3 replacement project. (Associated Press)

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GRID: Michigan utility companies are some of the slowest in the country at restoring power after outages, according to a new study from a consumer advocacy group. (Michigan Radio)

RENEWABLES: Officials in Rochester, Minnesota, consider the cost of various proposals to increase the city’s renewable energy portfolio. (Rochester Post Bulletin)

• Plans for a 175 MW solar project in southwestern Ohio divide nearby residents. (Yellow Springs News)
• A mid-19th century church in southwestern Michigan installs solar panels as part of its mission to “protect the environment and human health.” (MLive)

WIND: Construction begins on a 194 MW wind project in northwestern Illinois. (La Salle News Tribune)

COAL: We Energies continues to clean up a former site in Milwaukee that manufactured byproducts of burning coal. (Urban Milwaukee)

NUCLEAR: Exelon’s six Illinois nuclear plants operated at full power last week as high temperatures sent electricity demand soaring. (Clinton Herald)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Tesla posts a $408 million net loss in the second quarter despite delivering a record number of cars. (MarketWatch)

BIOFUELS: U.S. Department of Energy recommendations to deny ethanol waivers to small oil refiners are sometimes ignored by the EPA, according to a letter from Energy Secretary Rick Perry. (E&E News, subscription)

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POLITICS: Murray Energy CEO Bob Murray welcomes President Trump at a fundraiser in the Ohio River Valley, calling him “the greatest friend, the biggest champion of the coal industry.” (Steubenville Herald Star)

• A columnist calls Ohio’s nuclear and coal bailout bill the inverse of a renewable portfolio standard because it provides subsidies to extend the life of old technologies rather than encourage new ones. (Bloomberg)
• FirstEnergy is “skilled in securing corporate welfare” and its customers shouldn’t have to pay for the company’s missteps, a Columbus Dispatch columnist writes.
• An official with a Wisconsin nonprofit says a proposed high-voltage transmission line isn’t needed for grid reliability. (Madison Capital Times)

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