Midwest Energy News

Illinois solar boom stokes fears of a bust

RENEWABLES: A trailblazing wind-solar hybrid project in western Minnesota is expected to come online this month and could be a preview of what’s to come as renewable developers look for new ways to bolster projects. (Energy News Network)

ALSO:
• Officials in Kansas City advance a plan to power all municipal buildings with carbon-free electricity by the end of 2020. (Kansas City Star)
• Great Plains states were among the top in the nation last year for generating the highest percentages of their power mix from wind and solar. (Utility Dive)
• A General Motors official discusses the importance of utility green power programs in making large renewable energy purchases. (GreenBiz)

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SOLAR:
• Strong interest in Illinois community solar projects has officials scrambling to accommodate applicants while advocates say more state investment is needed to avoid a jobs bust. (Greentech Media)
• Wisconsin regulators take testimony on plans for a large-scale solar project near Lake Michigan. (WLUK)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Direct current, super fast-charging electric vehicle stations should be placed along highways near transmission substations to facilitate fast charging times, a new report says. (E&E News, subscription)

CLEAN TECH: Nuclear fusion, carbon capture and flow batteries are some of the technologies that may help Xcel Energy and Minnesota reach a 100 percent carbon-free power goal by 2050. (Minnesota Public Radio)

PIPELINES: A South Dakota legislative panel approves a bill aimed at preparing for protests against the Keystone XL pipeline. (Associated Press)

TRANSPORTATION: The White House reportedly held a tense call with U.S. automakers last month challenging them to back the administration’s effort to roll back fuel economy standards. (Bloomberg)

UTILITIES:
• The University of Iowa receives interest from dozens of companies interested in operating the university’s utility system. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)
• Indiana utility NIPSCO’s proposed rate increase to transition from coal and fund infrastructure would harm low-income residential ratepayers the most, critics say. (The Times of Northwest Indiana)

POWER PLANTS: Michigan congressman Tim Walberg introduces legislation to overhaul the federal Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA), which provides payments for independent power producers. (E&E News, subscription)

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COAL: Wisconsin’s demand for coal has far-reaching impacts on residents in the state and coal-mining regions in the west. (Isthmus)

COMMENTARY:
• Illinois’ 100 percent renewable energy bill “may serve as a remarkable test case of one of the Green New Deal’s core principles”: attacking social justice issues. (Vox)
• An energy policy researcher says storing coal ash on the Missouri River floodplain is a bad idea by “logic and science.” (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
• An Iowa editorial board says legislative attempts to eliminate net metering for solar customers are premature. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)

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