CLEAN POWER PLAN: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker issues an executive order prohibiting state agencies from working on Clean Power Plan compliance. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

OIL BY RAIL: Following a year of widespread concerns about increased oil train traffic, rail industry officials in Minnesota say their safety record improved greatly for 2015. (CBS Minnesota)

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• Plans move forward for a 4.6-megawatt commercial solar project in southwest Michigan. (Herald-Palladium)
Minnesota advocates say Target could be doing more to install solar panels at all of its 2,000 locations. (Public News Service)

SUPREME COURT: An evenly divided U.S. Supreme Court will likely have difficulty setting precedent as it takes up major energy cases later this term. (Greenwire)

OHIO: The advertising campaign being waged over FirstEnergy’s income-guarantee request reflects “the growing intensity in the fight to control the message over the merits” of the plan. (Toledo Blade)

• Analysts say Peabody Energy’s turnaround strategy is “too little too late.” (International Coal News)
Lansing, Michigan’s “workhorse” coal plant will still retire by 2020 despite uncertainty around pollution regulations. (Lansing State Journal)
• An Illinois couple is surprised at the strong public response to their social media campaign in support of laid-off coal miners. (Carbondale Southern Illinoisan)
Since first being elected, President Obama has gone from campaigning on the merits of “clean coal” to the industry’s No. 1 enemy. (Grist)

DEMAND RESPONSE: Federal regulators say they don’t plan to revisit demand response rules following a Supreme Court decision last month upholding the policy. (RTO Insider)

TRANSMISSION: Kansas power companies are divided over a proposed bill that critics say would eliminate open competition for transmission ownership. (Topeka Capital-Journal)

• The founder of a new energy company has a bold plan to separate treatment of customer investments in energy assets from those made by utilities. (Forbes)
• Despite a lack of load growth, a national utility trade group says there is still opportunity for billions of dollars in new capital investment. (RTO Insider)

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KANSAS: A Kansas legislative panel grills a state administration official over a $20 million lease/purchase plan for a new state power plant that is facing widespread criticism. (Topeka Capital-Journal)

• A “lifelong environmentalist” urges Wisconsin lawmakers to remove “outdated restrictions on building nuclear power plants” there. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
• An oil industry official says the 2007 ethanol mandate “is already outdated.” (Winona Daily News)

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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