Midwest Energy News

North Dakota wind project rejected over wildlife concerns

FINANCE: As Minnesota opens Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing to new construction instead of just energy retrofits, officials expect hundreds of millions of dollars in new projects to qualify. (Energy News Network)

STORAGE: Iowa economic development officials tentatively endorse a battery storage tax credit as part of a series of recommendations including studying the value of energy storage. (Energy News Network)

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COAL: After a Wisconsin electric cooperative took a coal plant offline this month due to concerns over fuel shortages, it may be cheaper for the utility to buy power from the market. (LaCrosse Tribune)

WIND:
• North Dakota regulators deny a siting permit for a wind project based on concerns from state and federal wildlife agencies. (Forum News Service)
• A Kansas study examining the impact of wind projects on nearby property values finds no “statistically significant changes” in aggregate rural home values within three years of operation. (Hutchinson News)
• The Illinois Municipal Electric Agency enters into a 15-year agreement to buy 50 MW of wind power from a project coming online this year. (SaukValley.com)
• The Federal Aviation Administration says a planned wind project will not pose a hazard to a mid-Michigan airport. (Mt. Pleasant Morning Sun)
• Nebraska’s second-largest wind project is mostly used to power a Facebook data center. (KMEG)

TRANSMISSION: After pioneering the use of drones to inspect transmission lines, Xcel Energy is now using them to build one in North Dakota. (Associated Press)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Two major electric vehicle charging networks partner to create one platform for users to access more charging stations. (CNET)

RENEWABLES: Minnesota-based retailer Target pledges to source 100% of its electricity from renewables by 2030. (Renewables Now)

SOLAR:
• A planned 200 MW solar project southwestern Minnesota will be split into two based on market demand, with 80 MW built out first. (Worthington Globe)
• A Wichita-area high school now operates one of the largest privately owned solar projects in Kansas. (Associated Press)
• County officials in northwestern Indiana want to start work on drafting a solar ordinance in preparation for future development. (WLFI)
• Local officials postpone a decision on a 10-year tax abatement for a planned 110 MW solar project in Indiana. (Anderson Herald Bulletin)

PIPELINES: Crop art in northeastern Nebraska is the latest sign of protest against the Keystone XL pipeline. (Lincoln Journal Star)

POLICY: U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry says the Department of Energy does not have the “regulatory or statutory ability” to bail out uneconomic coal and nuclear plants. (Utility Dive)

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EFFICIENCY: Officials in Rochester, Minnesota, show interest in a program to construct homes that are equipped to be zero net energy. (KAAL)

COMMENTARY:
• An Iowa editorial board expresses concern over Alliant Energy’s interest in a city’s plan to use more solar power. (Ottumwa Courier)
• Compared to Consumers Energy, DTE Energy’s long-term energy plan “feels both less ambitious and less committed on efficiency and renewables,” say clean energy advocates. (Natural Resources Defense Council)

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