Daily digest

South Dakota took federal energy efficiency funding ‘and ran’

EFFICIENCY: South Dakota received millions of dollars in 2009 from the federal government to promote energy efficient buildings, but the state never developed a plan for new statewide building codes. (Sioux Falls Argus Leader)

SOLAR:
• A nonprofit could provide a national “fiscally conservative” model for low-income energy assistance by creating a community solar project for a Minnesota tribe. (Midwest Energy News)
• Owners of a group of 18 homes in Wisconsin will be getting solar panels through a group-buying program. (Racine Journal Times)
• Consumers Energy begins operating a 1-megawatt solar project in Michigan. (Associated Press)
• A southern Illinois winery installs solar panels to offset electricity costs. (Southern Illinoisan)

***SPONSORED LINK: EnergyStorage Global Innovation Forum, September 12-13 in Chicago brings together top experts from ComEd, Oncor, PowerStream, PJM, Midwest ISO, ARPA-E, Argonne National Lab and many others to examine grid-level and behind-the-meter storage business models, technology innovations and opportunities. Visit www.esinnovationforum.com ***

PIPELINES:
• The new director of Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality says calls to shut down a pipeline through the Straits of Mackinac are “premature.” (Detroit News)
• Tribal groups’ opposition to the Dakota Access pipeline is growing. (Associated Press)

COAL:
• Proposed federal legislation could help Ohio’s $300 million worth of liabilities in abandoned mine land that has yet to be cleaned up. (The Athens News)
• Experts say reversing the declining employment trend — as Donald Trump says he’ll do — in the coal industry “would be next to impossible without huge subsidies.” (TIME)
• A labor agreement has been reached between Murray Energy and mine workers in Ohio. (Pittsburgh Business Times)
• A fire at a Michigan coal plant burned for 12 hours before being extinguished. (MLive)

OIL AND GAS:
• North Dakota officials are investigating an oil spill that is seeping out of a hillside. (Forum News Service)
• Another spill in North Dakota is much larger than previously thought. (Associated Press)

UTILITIES:
• Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy plans to increase revenue as energy efficiency grows and as it transitions away from coal. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)
• The changing energy landscape continues to create challenges for major electricity providers. (New York Times)
• Exelon has a $25 billion investment plan that will focus on critical infrastructure and smart grid technology. (SNL / Utility Dive)

POLITICS: Hillary Clinton has a list of nearly 100 advisers on energy and climate change, contrasting sharply with the Trump campaign. (Politico)

FOSSIL FUELS: A new Koch Industries-backed campaign seeks to reframe fossil fuels in a more positive light. (DeSmog Blog)

***SPONSORED LINK: The 15th annual Illinois Renewable Energy and Sustainability Fair will be held Aug. 20-21at the Ogle County Fairgrounds in Oregon, Illinois. Events include speakers, exhibits, children’s activities, music, food, and more.www.illinoisrenew.org***

MERGERS:
• Missouri regulators could reject a proposed merger between Great Plains Energy and Westar Energy over questions about whether it will benefit ratepayers. (Topeka Capital-Journal)
• A consumer advocacy group is appealing regulators’ decision to approve a merger between Pepco and Chicago-based Exelon. (Chicago Business Journal)

COMMENTARY: New regulations on frac sand mining in a Minnesota county are a better way forward than an outright ban. (Winona Daily News)

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