Midwest Energy News

Researchers study frac sand mining health impacts

RENEWABLES: Locally generated wind and solar could replace nearly all U.S. coal plants by 2025 for less than the cost of operating those plants, according to a new analysis by clean energy research groups. (Energy News Network)

FRAC SAND: Wisconsin residents and researchers raise concerns about the potential negative health impacts of living near frac sand mining operations. (IowaWatch)

***SPONSORED LINK: America has reached the “coal cost crossover”: In 2018, it was more expensive to operate 74% of existing U.S. coal plants than replacing them with new wind and solar power within 35 miles of each plant. Read new Energy Innovation research here.***

EFFICIENCY: A small Iowa community uses energy benchmarking to help meet clean energy goals as state lawmakers and utilities retreat from efficiency investments. (Energy News Network)

PIPELINES: The Wisconsin Supreme Court hears arguments this week in a dispute over insurance requirements involving an Enbridge pipeline. (Isthmus)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: General Motors plans to invest $300 million to build a new electric vehicle at a Michigan factory. (Detroit Free Press)

TRANSMISSION: Opponents of a planned Wisconsin transmission line question whether a 1998 law to speed up energy projects gives enough time to vet the latest plan. (Wisconsin State Journal)

WIND:
• Critics say Missouri lawmakers should address the tax treatment of wind projects to ensure counties see more revenue. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
• The developer of a 35-turbine wind project in Iowa seeks an extension as a separate legal challenge is settled. (Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier)

EMISSIONS: Wisconsin is the latest state to withdraw from a lawsuit challenging Obama administration regulations on mercury and other hazardous pollutants from power plants. (E&E News, subscription)

OIL & GAS: Initial arguments are filed in a dispute over a planned oil refinery near a national park in North Dakota. (Associated Press)

NUCLEAR: The operator of two Minnesota nuclear plants says it is prepared to handle potential flooding. (Minnesota Public Radio)

***SPONSORED LINK: Network and learn about cutting-edge energy topics at Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council’s 7th Annual Member Meeting. Google’s Vince Faherty to keynote. April 23 in East Lansing, MI. Register today before it’s sold out!***

BIOFUELS: An event this week in Iowa will focus on the state’s ability to transition from food-based biofuels. (Quad-City Times)

COMMENTARY:
• A manufacturers trade group opposes a planned 900 MW solar project in southern Ohio over cost concerns, while advocates for low-income ratepayers say it would bring needed investment to the region. (Canton Repository)
• An Xcel Energy official says North Dakota has strong potential for wind energy. (Inforum)
• Minnesota health professionals applaud Gov. Tim Walz’s 100 percent clean energy goal for reducing emissions from fossil fuels. (MinnPost)
• A solar installer says adding fees for Iowa utility customers who install panels would harm the industry. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)

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