ENERGY EFFICIENCY: Ameren Illinois’ request to scale back energy efficiency targets under a sweeping energy law passed last year is rooted, in part, in the longstanding divide between the Chicago area and “downstate” Illinois. (Midwest Energy News)

• Attorneys representing Nebraska landowners question company officials looking to build the Keystone XL pipeline during the opening day of public hearings. (Lincoln Journal Star)
• As Keystone XL hearings proceed, “the question of how the pipeline could affect the famed Ogallala Aquifer looms large.” (E&E News)
• Activists are descending on Nebraska this week as Keystone XL hearings continue. (Grist)

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CLEAN ENERGY: Officials in Ann Arbor, Michigan are considering a countywide tax that would help fund clean energy initiatives, including solar on city buildings and electric vehicles for public employees. (MLive)

NUCLEAR: A University of Chicago professor who specializes in energy policy says Illinois’ zero-emissions credit program for nuclear plants is “short-sighted and will be problematic for taxpayers.” (Cook County Record)

RENEWABLES: The utility arm of Berkshire Hathaway has been pushing back against a federal law that requires utilities in states to purchase renewable energy from independent producers. (Bloomberg)

CLIMATE: A draft of the latest federal climate impact assessment shows major change in store across the U.S., though scientists are concerned it will be rejected by the Trump administration. (New York Times)

GRID: A southern Minnesota town wants a transmission project by Xcel Energy to avoid a planned industrial park. (Mankato Free Press)

• MidAmerican Energy hosts an open house to educate the public on wind energy and show the large turbines at its Prairie Wind Farm project in Iowa. (Oskaloosa Herald)
• An electric cooperative in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula will add to its wind energy portfolio through a 132-megawatt project set to come online next year. (
• GE is suing turbine-maker Vestas in a U.S. District Court for allegedly infringing on one of its patents, and the results could impact America’s wind industry. (Greentech Media)

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COAL: Increased coal shipments are helping boost Indiana’s three ports. (Indiana Public Media)

COMMENTARY: Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says an early commitment to wind energy has led to low electricity prices, a resilient grid and economic development opportunities statewide. (The Hill)

Andy compiles the Midwest Energy News digest and was a journalism fellow for Midwest Energy News from 2014-2020. He is managing editor of MiBiz in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and was formerly a reporter and editor at City Pulse, Lansing’s alternative newsweekly.

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