Daily digest

Indiana utility to ‘significantly reduce’ its coal-fired generation

CLEAN TECH: Researchers in Illinois take a new approach to using the sun’s energy to convert carbon dioxide into fuel. (Midwest Energy News)

COAL:
• An Indiana utility plans to “significantly reduce” its coal-fired generation, retiring a plant by 2018 and most of another one in 2023. (Northwest Indiana Times)
• “States were never supposed to face this situation” of accepting a fraction of the cost of paying for coal mine cleanup when companies go bankrupt. (Marketplace)

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SOLAR:
• Large, commercial-scale solar installations “are rapidly rising up across Ohio,” an analysis of state records shows. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
• A 1-megawatt solar project is unveiled that will meet 10 percent of a Minnesota casino’s electric needs. (Bemidji Pioneer)

EFFICIENCY: Consumer advocates in Ohio say one natural gas company’s home energy audit program amounts to a subsidy from other customers and that efficiency measures could be pursued through “countless free-market channels.” (Columbus Dispatch)

WIND:
• A company looks to develop a 36,000-acre, 201-megawatt wind project in South Dakota. (Associated Press)
• Indiana’s wind industry continues to grow despite regulatory and development challenges. (Lakeshore Public Media)

PIPELINES: Iowa regulators will hear oral arguments Thursday on a petition to halt construction on the Dakota Access pipeline over eminent domain concerns. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)

FRAC SAND: Local officials in Iowa give initial approval to rezone nearly 750 acres allowing for an expansion of a frac sand mine. (Radio Iowa)

OIL AND GAS:
• A city commission in North Dakota adopts an ordinance that will eliminate oil field crew camps within city limits. (Associated Press)
• A researcher in Michigan says utilities have “little incentive” to plug natural gas leaks. (Michigan Radio)

BIOFUELS: Local officials in Nebraska approve a land sale that will become the future site of a $3.75 million biomass plant. (Sioux City Journal)

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ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Tesla says its latest version of the Model S electric vehicle is now the fastest car being produced in the world. (Associated Press)

COMMENTARY:
• While disputes over net metering “may get the headlines,” the underlying issue is with creating equitable rate structures to fit a 21st-century grid. (Governing)
• Electric choice advocates in Michigan say the market structure “has been routinely outperforming traditional monopolies in terms of price” since the recession of 2008-09. (Utility Dive)

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