Daily digest

Ohio solar-plus-storage project sparks interest among small utilities

SOLAR: Critics say a new solar advocacy group founded by ComEd was created to help push controversial, utility-backed legislation in Illinois. However, supporters say the group is helping to expand access to solar for low-income communities. (Midwest Energy News)

ALSO:
• Municipal utilities in Ohio are increasingly interested in solar-plus-storage projects, as the first in the U.S. by a municipal utility comes online there. (Cleveland Plain Dealer, Utility Dive)
• Advocates continue to “spread the solar gospel” in Ohio amid legislative attacks on clean energy. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
• A Minnesota school district installs solar panels at four of its schools, hoping to save $2.7 million on electric bills over the next 25 years. (Grand Forks Herald)

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FRAC SAND: A Wisconsin agency’s draft report on frac sand mining is quickly criticized by environmental groups who say it relies too heavily on industry-funded air-quality data. (LaCrosse Tribune)

WIND:
• Local officials in one Wisconsin county are recommending an independent review of residents’ claims that a wind project is adversely affecting their health. (Green Bay Press-Gazette)
• A push by developers to double the number of wind farms in Indiana faces opposition from some rural landowners. (Batesville Herald-Tribune)

COAL:
• Utility and local government officials discuss the future of coal ash storage piles at an Ohio coal plant that closed in 2014. (WVXU)
• Missouri-based Arch Coal says it has reached a deal on a restructuring agreement that would allow it to exit bankruptcy without the threat of litigation. (St. Louis Business Journal)
• AEP sells a 90-year-old former coal plant near Columbus, Ohio, to a real estate developer who is looking to re-purpose the site. (Columbus Business First)

EMISSIONS: Areas in Michigan and Illinois are identified by the U.S. EPA as not in compliance with sulfur dioxide emissions standards. (Utility Dive)

PIPELINES: A Texas landowner’s lawsuit against the southern portion of the Keystone XL pipeline could complicate TransCanada’s NAFTA challenge against the rejection of the northern portion. (DeSmog Blog)

OIL AND GAS: Developers of a proposed oil refinery in North Dakota say the project would not be visible from the nearby Theodore Roosevelt National Park. (Bismarck Tribune)

EFFICIENCY: A Wisconsin-based energy-efficient lighting supplier is expanding after landing a contract with a major regional retailer. (Milwaukee Business Journal)

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