CLIMATE: Minnesota becomes the first Midwest state to join the U.S. Climate Alliance, a group of states committed to upholding Paris Agreement targets despite President Trump’s pledge to withdraw from the accord. (Minnesota Public Radio)

• The CEO of Wisconsin-based We Energies says despite Trump’s decision, the company still anticipates tougher carbon regulations in the future. (WUWM)
• More than 1,200 corporations, academic institutions and state and local governments have committed to upholding U.S. climate action. (Climate Central)
• An Illinois professor discusses what exiting the Paris Agreement means for Midwest agriculture. (Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting)

CLEANTECH: A report finds venture capitalists are losing interest in clean energy, apart from software development, and much of their investments are focused outside the Midwest. (Midwest Energy News)

SMART GRID: Chicago-based Invenergy is launching a 10-year venture fund aimed at startups that want to help digitize the electric grid. (Greentech Media)

BIOENERGY: A provision in a recently signed Minnesota bill will allow clean energy funds to be used to shut down a pair of biomass plants. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

NUCLEAR: Utilities are likely to push harder for nuclear subsidies following the results of a recent PJM capacity auction. (Utility Dive)

• The CEO of American Electric Power says the utility will continue moving away from coal: “Our investors certainly expect us to really focus on sustainability and de-risk our business.” (Greentech Media/NPR)
• The Sierra Club is expected to testify today against an Ohio bill that would provide subsidies for two coal-fired power plants. (Columbus Dispatch)
• A Missouri utility announces it will retire six coal units by the end of 2019. (Power Engineering)

NATURAL GAS: MISO plans to share information on gas usage by power plants with pipeline operators as part of a reliability pilot program. (RTO Insider)

FRACKING: Activists in Youngstown, Ohio are expected to try a seventh time to pass a ballot measure banning fracking in the city. (Youngstown Vindicator)

• An Iowa county launches a solar group-buying program. (KCRG)
• Students at an Ohio university participate in a national competition to expand solar in low- and middle-income communities. (Mashable)

COMMENTARY: President Trump missed an opportunity to use the Paris climate accord as the linchpin of an “America First” clean energy strategy, says the senior vice president at Greentech Media.

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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