RENEWABLES: A new Department of Energy report finds the benefits of state renewable energy standards outweigh the costs by 7 to 1(Greentech Media)

CALIFORNIA: Gov. Jerry Brown declares a state of emergency over the ongoing methane leak from a natural-gas storage site near Los Angeles. (National Public Radio)

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KEYSTONE XL: TransCanada is seeking $15 billion in damages following the Obama administration’s rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline. In a separate court challenge, the company seeks to overturn the administration’s decision. (New York Times)

SOLAR: SolarCity, the largest rooftop solar provider in the country, plans to eliminate 550 jobs in Nevada following changes to the state’s net metering policies. (Bloomberg News)

• Colorado is becoming a test case over the environmental costs versus the economic benefits of mining for coal. (Vox)
• Utilities and clean-energy advocates are teaming up on a bill that would replace a ballot initiative and require most of Oregon’s energy mix to be coal-free by 2030. (Portland Business Journal)
A Republican bill looking to block a new Obama administration rule on stream protection is set to hit the House floor. (The Hill)
Community colleges in southwest Virginia are receiving $2 million to help retrain laid-off coal miners. (Associated Press)
Rail shipments dropped 12 percent in 2015 due to weak demand from U.S. utilities and export markets. (Associated Press)

• West Virginia receives $18 million from fracking leases but no royalties yet. (Associated Press)
• Researchers say significant gaps remain in understanding the full extent of public-health risks associated with fracking chemicals. (Huffington Post)

• If congressional Republicans do have a plan to wrest control of the Paris climate agreement, they are so far going about it quietly. (ClimateWire)
• A new study says power plants around the world that depend on abundant water supplies may face production limitations. (Climate Home)

CAPACITY AUCTION: After a surge in prices stemming from a capacity auction last year, federal regulators order grid operator MISO to change the rules that govern the annual auction. Meanwhile, Illinois’ attorney general wants refunds for ratepayers. (EnergyWire)

WIND: Neither of South Carolina’s investor-owned utilities intends to develop wind energy off the state’s coast. (The Post and Courier)

STORAGE: Researchers have developed a system that can store renewable energy underground while at the same time storing CO2 from fossil-fuel plants. (

LIQUIFIED NATURAL GAS: The EPA is asking the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to revise how it calculates the climate change impacts of LNG export terminals. (SNL)

COMMENTARY: In Texas, “competition, innovation and a heavy dose of government have accelerated the transition to cleaner fuels without slowing the economy.” (Dallas Morning News)

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Andy Balaskovitz

Andy compiles the Midwest Energy News digest and was a journalism fellow for Midwest Energy News from 2014-2020. He is managing editor of MiBiz in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and was formerly a reporter and editor at City Pulse, Lansing’s alternative newsweekly.

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