Daily digest

Michigan regulators approve plan for Upper Peninsula power plants

STORAGE: A new housing development in suburban Minneapolis-St. Paul will use grid-interactive electric thermal water heaters to enable a community energy storage project. (Midwest Energy News)

MICHIGAN: State regulators approve a $277 million plan for a pair of natural gas plants to be built in the central Upper Peninsula to replace an aging coal plant in Marquette. (POWER Magazine)

***SPONSORED LINK: Free CEE Technology Forum, November 7 at Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. See how tech piloting, program design, and partnerships will define our next era of energy efficiency. Speakers from Nest, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, EPRI, Wright-Hennepin Cooperative Electric Association, Xcel Energy, and Northwest Power & Conservation Council. ***

SOLAR:
• A bipartisan group of Michigan lawmakers introduce a bill that would reinstate a tax exemption for small-scale distributed generation projects, hoping to clarify a policy that has left some residents paying more to install solar panels. (Midwest Energy News)
• Wisconsin-based Organic Valley launches a partnership to develop 12 megawatts of solar as it becomes the largest food company in the world to source 100 percent of its electricity from renewables. (Wisconsin State Farmer)
• A group of nuns in Minnesota help bring a 1.3-megawatt solar garden to their community. (Mankato Free Press)
• Michigan State University officials today are unveiling a major solar project installed at carports on campus, making it the largest such project in North America. (WLNS)

COAL:
• Industry groups raise concerns about having a 90-day on-site fuel supply under a Department of Energy proposal to help coal and nuclear plants, saying it could be “unduly restrictive” and limit the number of plants that receive support. (SNL)
• Dynegy, which operates multiple coal plants in Illinois and Ohio, also opposes the Energy Department plan because it could potentially damage competitive electric markets. (E&E News)

PIPELINES:
• An industry group criticizes a video game developed by a Michigan State University professor, saying it encourages “eco-terrorism” by allowing users to strike oil pipelines. (Associated Press)
• Two public hearings in St. Cloud, Minnesota on Enbridge’s Line 3 replacement plan are canceled after local officials raise logistical and safety concerns. (Minnesota Public Radio)

CLIMATE: A judge in Missouri says Peabody Energy is protected by its recent bankruptcy from climate change lawsuits brought by California coastal communities against fossil fuel companies. (MarketWatch)

NUCLEAR: An advocacy group submits a stockholder resolution to DTE Energy asking it to phase out one of its nuclear plants. (Monroe News)

UTILITIES: Wisconsin residents urge state regulators to cap utility rate increases as Xcel Energy seeks to increase revenues to maintain grid reliability. (La Crosse Tribune)

WIND: South Dakota regulators reject a plan for a 200-turbine wind project that would have spanned more than 29,000 acres. (Watertown Public Opinion)

RESEARCH: U.S. EPA administrator Scott Pruitt seeks to weaken independent scientific review at the agency in what critics say is part of a broader effort to undermine climate science. (The Economist)

OIL AND GAS:
• An industry group creates an online database cataloging attacks against energy infrastructure. (Associated Press)
• South Dakota regulators vote to cap costs at $282,500 for determining whether a utility receives a state permit to build a natural gas plant. (Watertown Public Opinion)

COMMENTARY: How electric buses can provide multiple benefits for cities. (Vox)

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