VOLKSWAGEN SCANDAL: The German automaker will pay more than $10 billion to settle claims related to its U.S. diesel emissions cheating scandal and fund efforts to offset pollution. (Reuters)

• An oil spill outside of Los Angeles leaked roughly 700 barrels but it was quickly contained before reaching the Pacific Ocean. (Reuters)
• More than three years after an Exxon Mobil pipeline ruptured in an Arkansas subdivision, the company has contributed $500,000 to help pay for a new city hall there. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)

• Coal plants in the upper Midwest have been more resilient than in other parts of the grid due to a lack of l0w-cost gas-fired plants and easy access to coal supplies. (Bloomberg)
• A White House report says a sharp increase in royalty payments for coal on U.S. property would trigger only modest mining reductions. (Associated Press)

NUCLEAR: An investigation into whistleblower complaints at the only nuclear plant in the Northwest finds performance measures have declined but that management did not try to deliberately hide that information. (Seattle Times)

CAP-AND-TRADE: Staff at California’s air regulatory agency support extending the state’s cap-and-trade program beyond 2020. (Reuters)

• Federal investigators blame Union Pacific Railroad for not maintaining its track prior to a fiery oil train derailment this month. (Associated Press)
• Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signs new regulations into law for unconventional oil and gas drillers. (Penn Live)
• Electricity output around the area in Alberta affected by a recent wildfire is rebounding, suggesting the industry is as well. (Reuters)
• Pennsylvania lawmakers are considering reinstating a tax on natural gas sales to support a deficit-strapped budget. (Associated Press)

REGULATION: A recent court decision blocking the Obama administration’s new rules for fracking on public land adds to a streak of court losses on environmental issues. (Greenwire)

• Tesla’s plan to merge with SolarCity raises questions about whether large-scale solar companies can prevail over smaller-sized companies. (EnergyWire)
• The CEO of bankrupt solar developer SunEdison resigns. (St. Louis Business Journal)

• Electric cooperatives look to build more distributed energy outside of contracts with transmission and generation providers. (Greentech Media)
• California regulators approve interconnection policy revisions for distributed generation “that once again puts the state at the forefront of reimagining the grid.” (Greentech Media)

UTILITIES: Consumer and environmental advocacy groups join energy companies in opposing FirstEnergy’s revised rate proposal that critics still call a “bailout” for uneconomic coal and nuclear plants. (Midwest Energy News)

FRACKING: The beginning stages of the lawsuit brought against the Obama administration’s rules for fracking on public land started at a 2014 meeting of industry regulators and other state-level officials and lobbyists. (DeSmog Blog)

COMMENTARY: Solar photovoltaic technology is at a point where it can be integrated into just about anything. (Vox)

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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