Midwest Energy News

Wisconsin approves controversial power line project

TRANSMISSION: Wisconsin regulators give preliminary approval to a controversial transmission project in southwestern Wisconsin, saying it will save ratepayers money while improving access to wind energy. (Wisconsin State Journal)

OHIO:
• A developer cancels plans for a $1.1 billion natural gas plant in Lordstown, Ohio, after lawmakers approve subsidies for nuclear and coal plants. (Youngstown Vindicator)
• Opponents submit a second petition for a referendum on nuclear bailout legislation in Ohio. (Fremont News-Messenger) 

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PIPELINES:
• County officials in northern Michigan consider a resolution in support of a Line 5 pipeline tunnel that’s nearly identical to ones already passed in three Upper Peninsula counties. (Interlochen Public Radio)
• A powerful oil industry lobbying group has played a role in crafting legislation in multiple states to criminalize pipeline protests. (The Intercept)
• Elizabeth Warren is the third Democratic presidential candidate to publicly oppose the Line 3 pipeline replacement project in Minnesota. (MinnPost)

RENEWABLES: Nearly $200 million will not be available for renewable energy credits in Illinois by 2021, leaving the state well short of a 25% renewable energy target by 2025. (Utility Dive)

OIL & GAS:
• North Dakota officials say a 2015 liquid natural gas pipeline spill originally reported as 10 gallons was actually more than 240,000 gallons, but downplay reports that it could be as high as 11 million gallons. (Associated Press, Forum News Service)
• Lawsuits from environmental groups and landowners have delayed for a year progress on an oil refinery near a national park in North Dakota. (Associated Press)

UTILITIES: Hearings continue today in federal court on FirstEnergy Solutions’ bankruptcy plan. (Akron Beacon Journal)

BIOFUELS:
• Congressional lawmakers call for an investigation into the use of biofuel waivers for small oil refiners as the Trump administration seeks to stem the tide of rising anger in Farm Belt states. (Cedar Rapids Gazette, Reuters)
• “The Renewable Fuel Standard is under attack,” says Republican Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa. (Cedar Rapids Gazette)
• North Dakota officials return from a trade trip seeking to increase the state’s share of Brazil’s ethanol market. (Bismarck Tribune)

WIND:
• State regulators approve plans for a 299 MW wind project in northwestern Missouri. (North American Windpower)
• County officials in northwestern Missouri will continue studying the potential for wind projects as they draft local regulations. (St. Joseph News-Press)
• A southwestern Illinois county approves a moratorium on wind farms that could jeopardize plans for a proposed project. (Belleville News Democrat)

COMMENTARY:
• Advocates expect greater electric vehicle sales in the coming years as the cost of EVs are increasingly comparable to gasoline vehicles. (Detroit News)
• More transparency is needed as Xcel Energy shares grid data with stakeholder groups to unlock the full potential of distributed generation, advocates say. (Utility Dive)

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