Midwest Energy News

Iowa lawmakers advance fee for solar customers

SOLAR: The Iowa Senate passes a bill that would add a new fee for most utility customers with solar panels. (Radio Iowa)

• A developer says snow build-up on solar panels can temporarily reduce production but it is not a major hindrance. (Energy News Network)
• Wisconsin’s Dairyland Power Cooperative finalizes a power purchase agreement to buy 149 MW of solar capacity. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
• Rural electric cooperatives have sharply increased their solar capacity in recent years as they transition from coal contracts. (E&E News, subscription)
• Plans move forward for a 25 MW solar project at a northwestern Illinois industrial park. (Galva News)

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EFFICIENCY: About 40 percent of Kansas City’s large, privately owned buildings are not in compliance with an energy benchmarking program adopted in 2015. (Energy News Network)

COAL: Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s proposed budget would restore $5 million for a coal-mining reclamation fund that had been raided in 2017. (Columbus Dispatch)

• Illinois lawmakers appear ready to rush through a bill that would exclude municipalities from wind zoning regulations, leaving them to the county. (Illinois News Network)
• Indiana communities take varied approaches to wind development and local regulations. (WBAA)

GRID: Natural gas generation topped coal for the first time last year in grid operator PJM’s territory. (Platts)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Utilities and their trade groups have quietly lobbied to extend federal tax credits for electric vehicles. (E&E News, subscription)

POLITICS: U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow of Michigan says she is focused on policies to reduce carbon emissions but not necessarily the Green New Deal. (Michigan Advance)

RENEWABLES: Clean energy experts discuss ways that 100 percent renewable energy can be deployed even in harsh weather like the recent polar vortex. (Sierra Magazine)

***SPONSORED LINK: Join your peers at the 14th annual Advancing Renewables in the Midwest Conference, April 2-3 in Columbia, MO, to network, share ideas and find solutions. Speakers will discuss energy efficiency and renewable energy policies, programs and projects—from the use of microgrids in the military to developing infrastructure for charging electric vehicles.***

OIL & GAS: North Dakota lawmakers may ask voters whether it should be more difficult to tap earnings from the state’s oil tax savings account. (Associated Press)

COMMENTARY: Rural advocates say policies like net metering would allow the solar industry to grow in states like Nebraska. (Grand Island Independent)

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