Daily digest

Report: Ohio utilities projected efficiency savings before standards freeze

OHIO: State regulators begin hearings Monday on a controversial proposal from FirstEnergy to guarantee income from struggling nuclear and coal plants. (Midwest Energy News)

FRACKING: A countywide elections board rejects advocates’ attempts to put an anti-fracking ballot measure before Youngstown, Ohio voters. (Youngstown Vindicator)

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EFFICIENCY:
• A new report shows Ohio utilities had projected major efficiency savings under a mandate prior to lawmakers’ freezing the statewide standard last year. (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
“Flexiwatts” technology may be the next generation in customers’ ability to reduce their energy use and lower bills. (Utility Dive)
Two Ohio companies are recognized by the White House for their plan to renovate 12,000 low-income homes in 13 states with efficiency upgrades. (Dayton Business Journal)

OIL AND GAS:
• Environmental groups are preparing to sue the EPA over what they see as lax regulation over oil and gas drilling waste. (Greenwire)
A refinery outside of St. Louis shuts down some of its operations after a cooling tower collapses. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

OZONE: Manufacturers in Wisconsin speak out against proposed federal ground-level ozone rules, saying they will “stifle the economy and kill millions of jobs.” (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

MINING: An Ohio family’s home is sinking into the ground and state officials are investigating whether it’s due to an abandoned coal mine. (The Independent)

WIND:
• Officials in an Iowa county reject a proposed wind project due to health, property and wildlife concerns raised by residents. (Associated Press)
• A wind developer says it may sue an Illinois county over its proposed setback rules. (Rockford Register Star)

ETHANOL: At a campaign stop in Iowa, Hillary Clinton announces her plan to support the ethanol industry as part of a broader rural aid package. (Washington Post)

PIPELINE: Enbridge makes progress on a 167-mile, $900 million pipeline running through Illinois. (Bloomington Pantagraph)

SOLAR:
• Xcel Energy looks to buy land from a Wisconsin county to build the state’s largest solar garden. (LaCrosse Tribune)
DTE Energy announces plans for a 800 kw array in southeast Michigan. (WDIV-TV)

RATE INCREASE: State regulators approve a $78 million rate increase for a major Kansas utility that does not include a fixed solar fee the company sought. (Topeka Capital-Journal)

OIL TRAINS: A flurry of state activity around the country seeks to tighten regulations on the freight industry. (Governing Magazine)

MERGER: Exelon weighs its next options after D.C. regulators reject its proposed $6.8 billion merger with Pepco. (EnergyWire)

COAL: Coal sees its sharpest decline in Midwest states. (Platts)

AWARD: A Minnesota legislator is recognized by the state Municipal Utilities Association for his work opposing more regulations on municipal utilities and co-ops. (Northfield News)

COMMENTARY: Michigan Democrats’ energy plan will mean a brighter future for the state. (Detroit News)

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