NATURAL GAS: A Michigan utility announces plans for an 1,100 MW natural gas plant at the site of two aging coal plants north of Detroit. (Detroit Free Press)

• After months of negotiations and surviving a contentious budget battle in the state legislature, the hard work of enacting Illinois’ comprehensive energy bill is underway. (Midwest Energy News)
• Six entities have been named as funding recipients for job training programs under the new law. (Chicago Defender)

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• Advocates from Illinois were among those urging the EPA this week not to roll back tougher standards for water discharges from power plants. (Midwest Energy News)
• Illinois, Minnesota and Iowa are among 15 states suing the EPA over the delay of stricter ozone standards. (Associated Press)
• Sources say the EPA is preparing to replace the Clean Power Plan with a narrower rule that would center on increasing the thermal efficiency of individual coal plants as a means to reduce carbon emissions. (SNL)

• Despite legislation to phase out net metering, Indiana’s solar market still has bright spots. (PV Magazine)
• Goshen, Indiana is recognized by the Department of Energy for policies making it easier to install solar. (Goshen News)
• A program in an Iowa county to encourage rooftop solar reaches a key benchmark. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)

UTILITIES: As merchant generators struggle, the utility regulatory model could start looking a lot more like it did 20 years ago. (Utility Dive)

COAL: Despite high-profile failures in Illinois and Mississippi, hope for a “clean coal” future remains high in North Dakota. (OZY)

• Billionaire pipeline developer Kelcy Warren defends construction work on the Rover pipeline in a letter to U.S. lawmakers. (WDAY)
• North Dakota is still seeking federal funding to cover law enforcement costs related to the Dakota Access pipeline protests. (Associated Press)

• The governors of Iowa and Nebraska voice support for new EPA biofuel targets. (Cedar Rapids Gazette, KHGI)
• Some ethanol plants are turning to booze and other types of alcohol to diversify their production. (Reuters)

GRID: ComEd seeks support from Illinois regulators to move forward with its Bronzeville microgrid project. (Electric Light & Power)

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ACTIVISM: A Wisconsin professor biked 1,250 miles across three states to promote wind energy. (La Crosse Tribune)

COMMENTARY: A Nebraska activist says the Keystone XL pipeline provides no benefits to the state. (Lincoln Journal Star)

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Ken Paulman

Ken is the director of the Energy News Network at Fresh Energy and is a founding editor of both Midwest Energy News and Southeast Energy News. Prior to joining Fresh Energy, he was the managing editor for online news at Minnesota Public Radio. He started his journalism career in 2002 as a copy editor for the Duluth News Tribune before spending five years at the Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington, where he worked as a copy editor, online producer, features editor and night city editor. A Nebraska native, Ken has a bachelor's degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a master's degree from the University of Oregon. He is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors.

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