Daily digest

Western North Dakota in the midst of wind energy boom

WIND:
• Western North Dakota is in the midst of a wind energy boom. (Forum News Service)
• Consumers Energy is taking a Michigan county to court over a dispute in the assessed value of wind turbines. (Tuscola County Advertiser)

SOLAR:
• A Wisconsin program for homeowners and businesses to buy solar in bulk will also offer installation training for high school dropouts. (Racine Journal Times)
• Missouri officials are launching a pilot program for solar roadways. (KMOX)

***SPONSORED LINK: The Michigan Energy Fair announces two new partners: The Sustainable Living Summit 2016 and The Great Lakes Emergency Preparedness Expo, June 24-25, Ingham County Fairgrounds, Mason, Michigan. For complete information go to www.glrea.org ***

EFFICIENCY: A dynamic display system at a Chicago office building that makes it easier to monitor energy use is helping to achieve efficiency goals. (Midwest Energy News)

CLIMATE: A new report says a carbon tax or trading system would be expensive for Michigan ratepayers, but it would be an effective way to comply with the Clean Power Plan. (Crain’s Detroit Business)

OIL AND GAS:
• Low natural gas prices are upending the utility sector, as evidenced by planned nuclear plant closures in Illinois. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
• North Dakota officials say the state’s rainy day fund is on the verge of being emptied due to depressed oil prices. (Associated Press)
• North Dakota landowners are suing an oil company over the ongoing contamination of their property. (Bismarck Tribune)

UTILITIES:
• A bankruptcy judge allows Peabody Energy to pay bonuses in order to retain mid-level employees. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
• Wisconsin-based WEC Energy Group looks to create a new corporation for its Michigan customers to more accurately split its operating costs between ratepayers in the two states. (Marquette Mining Journal)
• Washington D.C. regulators deny a request to reconsider its approval of the $6.8 billion Pepco/Exelon merger, setting up a potential legal battle. (Washington Business Journal)

FRACKING: States continue to struggle with managing the growing waste stream produced from fracking. (Grist)

COAL: Environmental groups raise concerns as Indiana considers new rules for storing coal ash. (Associated Press)

OIL BY RAIL: A federal spending bill would increase funding for rail safety along crude oil routes. (LaCrosse Tribune)

BIOFUELS: A Wisconsin congressman proposes a 30 percent tax credit for energy systems that convert manure into methane gas. (LaCrosse Tribune)

REGULATION: Observers are wondering what’s taking so long to fill a vacancy on Indiana’s utility regulatory commission. (Indianapolis Business Journal)

POLITICS: Southeast Ohio, once home to a thriving coal industry, is “considered a small but mighty barometer this election cycle of how voter disillusionment and anger will play out.” (Associated Press)

NUCLEAR: The U.S. Department of Energy is planning to scale up the capacity generated from advanced nuclear reactors by 2050. (Forbes)

COMMENTARY:
• A northern Michigan utility’s plan to contract for 3.6 megawatts of wind power is a good deal for ratepayers and the environment. (Traverse City Record Eagle)
• A projected capacity shortfall in the MISO footprint could be a reprieve for an Illinois nuclear plant. (Champaign News-Gazette)
• Clean energy sector growth is lagging in Indiana. (South Bend Tribune)

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