BIOFUELS:Severe, unintended consequences” of expanded corn production are causing environmental groups to change their position on ethanol mandates. (Bloomberg)

• The Republican and Democratic party platforms spell out drastic differences on energy, but to what extent do they drive policy? (InsideClimate News)
• Activist Tom Steyer says climate concerns will drive turnout among younger voters. (ClimateWire)

VW SCANDAL: A judge gives temporary approval to a settlement that could offer thousands in compensation for owners of VW diesel cars involved in the company’s emissions-cheating scheme. (USA Today)

CLIMATE: Rising sea levels and tidal flooding threaten 18 military bases along the East Coast and Gulf Coast, according to a new report. (Reuters)

• Environmentalists are lining up to oppose a new TransCanada pipeline that would link the oil sands with the East Coast. (Associated Press)
• The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approves 60 river crossings for the Dakota Access pipeline in Iowa, clearing the way for construction. (Associated Press)
• A New Jersey utility tries to block a proposed New England natural gas pipeline. (NJ Spotlight)
• Massachusetts senators question federal regulators’ decision to hire a contractor to review a pipeline project, even though the company has ties with developers. (Patriot Ledger)

FRACKING: Landowners and environment and health advocates push for greater disclosure of fracking chemicals in Montana. (Associated Press)

• A Mississippi utility announces another $9 million in cost overruns for its “clean coal” plant. (Associated Press)
Alpha Natural Resources says it has emerged from bankruptcy as a private company with operations and offices now only in Kentucky and West Virginia. (Charleston Gazette-Mail)

• For some solar customers, new rate changes mean their systems will never pay for themselves. (New York Times)
• Local governments in Rhode Island ease zoning rules to allow solar projects on farms. (Westerly Sun)

• The largest wind project in Iowa’s history is back on track after MidAmerican Energy reaches an agreement with major industrial customers. (Midwest Energy News)
Wyoming seeks to replicate Colorado’s success in attracting wind energy jobs. (Rocky Mountain PBS)

HYDRO: A new report says the U.S. could increase its hydropower capacity 50 percent by 2050. (Washington Post)

ELECTRIC CARS: A Michigan utility plans a $15 million buildout of electric vehicle chargers; critics are concerned the plan could drive out private sector competitors. (Midwest Energy News)

COMMENTARY: A North Dakota newspaper calls Spokane, Washington’s proposal to fine oil trains an “overreaction.” (Bismarck Tribune)

Ken is the director of the Energy News Network at Fresh Energy and is a founding editor of both Midwest Energy News and Southeast Energy News. Prior to joining Fresh Energy, he was the managing editor for online news at Minnesota Public Radio. He started his journalism career in 2002 as a copy editor for the Duluth News Tribune before spending five years at the Spokesman-Review in Spokane, Washington, where he worked as a copy editor, online producer, features editor and night city editor. A Nebraska native, Ken has a bachelor's degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a master's degree from the University of Oregon. He is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and Investigative Reporters and Editors.

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