Midwest Energy News is one of five regional services published by the Energy News Network. Today’s edition was compiled by Andy Balaskovitz.

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ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE:
• Illinois activists who fought coal plants and petroleum coke storage sites now champion legislation that would require robust community participation and oversight for new industry in environmental justice areas. (Energy News Network)
• The legislation may not pass this session as supporters compete with business interests in an election year. (Chicago Sun-Times)

CARBON CAPTURE: Developers estimate the cost of a proposed large-scale carbon capture and storage project at a North Dakota coal plant has grown from $1 billion to $1.45 billion. (Inforum)

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OIL & GAS: State regulators approve plans for a controversial $171 million natural gas plant in central Wisconsin that environmental and ratepayer advocates opposed. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: After Minnesota regulators rejected Xcel Energy’s $150 million electric vehicle rebate program, the utility and clean energy advocates are now pursuing legislatively approved funding options to help spur electric vehicle adoption. (Utility Dive)

PIPELINES: The U.S. Transportation Department adopts new rules requiring oil and gas pipeline operators to install emergency valves that can cut off the flow in new or replaced pipelines. (Associated Press)

GRID: The Illinois Senate advances a proposal to create an electric grid reliability task force that would study the effects of state energy laws, including last year’s Climate and Equitable Jobs Act. (KPVI)

WIND:
• Minnesota regulators will hold public hearings in the coming weeks on a proposed 259 MW wind project spanning three southeastern counties. (Post Bulletin)
• DTE Energy and more than a dozen eastern Michigan townships reach an agreement in a yearslong dispute over the taxable value of wind turbines. (Huron Daily Tribune)

STORAGE: The U.S. added 3,508 MW of battery storage capacity in 2021, which was more than double the amount added in 2020, according to a new report. (Inside Climate News)

HYDROELECTRIC: The University of Notre Dame expects to complete construction in the coming months on a new 2.5 MW, $27.1 million hydroelectric project in South Bend, Indiana. (South Bend Tribune)

UTILITIES: Chicago natural gas utility Peoples Gas posted a record $205 million in net income last year with help from a state law that critics say opened the door for runaway capital infrastructure investments. (Crain’s Chicago Business)

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SOLAR: County planning officials in eastern Iowa collect public feedback to determine whether to add conditions to a proposed 1,500-acre solar project. (Clinton Herald)

COMMENTARY:
• The chairperson of the Kansas Sierra Club says a county zoning proposal near Kansas City “would make it one of the most difficult places in the country to build a large-scale solar farm.” (Kansas Reflector)
• An Ohio climate activist says the state’s attorney general should be commended for his efforts to dissolve FirstEnergy’s business license following the company’s involvement in a $60 billion bribery scheme. (Ohio Capital Journal)
• Michigan’s two U.S. senators should work to help deliver on the Biden administration’s climate proposals and clean energy investments, a Detroit environmental justice advocate writes. (Crain’s Detroit Business)

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Andy Balaskovitz

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.