COAL: Vistra Energy announces plans to retire its coal fleet totaling nearly 7,000 MW in Illinois and Ohio by 2027 as it invests in solar and storage projects. (S&P Global)

ALSO:
• Last year Vistra’s coal fleet generated 15% of Illinois’ electricity but contributed nearly half of the state’s carbon emissions. (Chicago Tribune)
• A federal judge blocks a proposed joint venture between Peabody Energy and Arch Resources, saying it would “substantially impair competition” in the Powder River Basin coal market. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

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ILLINOIS: A former ComEd official pleads guilty to a corruption charge in the first conviction related to an ongoing federal investigation into an alleged utility bribery scheme. (Chicago Sun-Times)

SOLAR:
• Michigan’s Department of Natural Resources selects a developer to install large solar projects at former mine sites in the northern Lower Peninsula and Upper Peninsula. (MLive)
• A federal grant program is helping a growing number of Missouri farmers install solar projects on their land to offset energy costs. (KCUR)
• Developers are in the early stages of plans for a 2,000-acre, 150 MW solar project in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. (WLUC)

GEOTHERMAL: The Michigan capitol building is undergoing major renovations that include a new geothermal heating and cooling system. (Capital News Service)

PIPELINES: Public comment begins on a series of permits Enbridge is seeking to build an underground tunnel for Line 5 in the Straits of Mackinac. (MLive)

CLEAN ENERGY: Advanced energy sector jobs continue growing in Indiana, where they now outpace auto parts manufacturing. (Inside Indiana Business)

UTILITIES: Consumers Energy will contribute $12 million to help residential and small-business customers who are struggling to pay utility bills during the pandemic. (WILX)

COMMENTARY:
• An electric vehicle car-sharing program set to launch next year in Minneapolis-St. Paul hopes to allow far more residents access to EVs without having to purchase them, a columnist writes. (MinnPost)
• The director of Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy says the state’s 2050 carbon neutral goal sends a “powerful message” to markets for clean energy and transportation. (Bridge Michigan)

Andy Balaskovitz

Andy Balaskovitz

Andy has been a journalism fellow for Midwest Energy News since 2014, following four years at City Pulse, Lansing’s alt-weekly newspaper. He covers the state of Michigan and also compiles the Midwest Energy News daily email digest. Andy is a graduate of Michigan State University’s Journalism School, where he focused on topics covered by the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism and wrote for the Great Lakes Echo. He was the 2008 and 2009 recipient of the Edward Meeman Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Student in Environmental Journalism at Michigan State.