EFFICIENCY: The legacy of systemic racism means many Black and other minority-owned businesses continue to struggle with access to capital, which can be particularly challenging when pursuing financing for energy efficiency projects. (Energy News Network)

TRANSPORTATION: A federally funded effort has contributed to the buildout of electric vehicle charging and compressed natural gas stations along an interstate highway corridor connecting Michigan and Montana. (Energy News Network)

• The Ohio Supreme Court postpones the collection of $170 million to support Ohio nuclear plants under a law at the center of a bribery scandal. (Cleveland.com)
• Newly revealed emails and text messages show the extent of lobbying pressure lawmakers faced to support HB 6. (Columbus Dispatch)
• FirstEnergy faces more than a dozen shareholder lawsuits that could result in millions of dollars worth of settlements. (Associated Press)
• Ohio Republican leadership will decide over the coming months whether to expel state Rep. Larry Householder over his role in the HB 6 scandal. (WOSU)

CLIMATE: Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers’ administration begins to review state building codes as a way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. (Wisconsin State Journal)

• Wisconsin regulators plan to update the state’s 17-year-old rules governing distributed generation projects as customer-owned solar installations continue to increase. (Wisconsin State Journal)
• Officials are considering plans for a solar project on about 36 acres of a toxic former industrial site on Chicago’s Southeast Side. (Chicago Sun-Times)
• Madison Gas and Electric files plans for a $15.3 million, 8 MW solar project to provide power to local city and school buildings. (Wisconsin State Journal)
• Participation is growing in a solar energy job training program in Madison, Wisconsin. (Wisconsin State Journal)

NATURAL GAS: Critics question whether a massive natural gas distribution line replacement project in Chicago, scheduled to be completed in 2040, is still in the public interest as the power sector transitions to renewables. (Chicago Tribune)

• Minnesota regulators approve Xcel Energy’s $750 million plan to repower and extend the life of several large-scale wind projects, which the utility says will result in ratepayer savings. (Star Tribune)
• Ameren takes ownership of a 400 MW wind project in northern Missouri as the utility boosts its renewable energy portfolio. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
• A county board in central Illinois considers plans for a 120-turbine wind project that includes taller turbines than are allowed under a local ordinance. (News-Gazette)
• Enel Green Power begins operating the 199 MW expansion of a Kansas wind project while also bringing online a 236 MW wind project in Missouri. (ReNews)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Michigan regulators approve a $12.2 million Consumers Energy pilot program to boost adoption of electrified commercial fleet vehicles. (MiBiz)

NUCLEAR: Companies seek to transfer the ownership of a southwestern Michigan nuclear plant ahead of a planned permanent closure starting in 2022. (MLive)

• The Red Lake and White Earth Bands of Ojibwe ask the Minnesota Court of Appeals to halt construction on the Line 3 replacement until lawsuits challenging the project can be heard. (MPR News)
• Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel is optimistic that the state will receive a favorable court ruling to shut down Line 5 in the Straits of Mackinac later this spring. (Michigan Advance)

BIOENERGY: South Sioux City, Nebraska, filed suit against the owner of a shuttered waste-to-energy plant last month claiming the company misrepresented its ability to operate the facility. (Sioux City Journal)

OIL & GAS: North Dakota officials call 2020 a “pretty terrible” year for the oil industry, which isn’t expected to fully bounce back from the pandemic-induced downturn until at least 2022. (Bismarck Tribune)

COMMENTARY: Indiana lawmakers’ attempts to maintain policies that slow the transition from coal power to clean energy is “unwise and wrong-headed,” an editorial board says. (Terre Haute Tribune-Star)

Andy Balaskovitz

Andy Balaskovitz

Andy has been a journalism fellow for Midwest Energy News since 2014, following four years at City Pulse, Lansing’s alt-weekly newspaper. He covers the state of Michigan and also compiles the Midwest Energy News daily email digest. Andy is a graduate of Michigan State University’s Journalism School, where he focused on topics covered by the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism and wrote for the Great Lakes Echo. He was the 2008 and 2009 recipient of the Edward Meeman Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Student in Environmental Journalism at Michigan State.