Daily Digest

Iowa lawmakers seek to end tax that funds renewable energy research

SOLAR: Multiple Midwest states are changing interconnection rules for solar customers, which could likely to cut the time and money required to establish a connection to the grid. (Midwest Energy News)

ALSO:
• Officials unveil a 10-megawatt solar project at a National Guard base in Minnesota, the largest on any National Guard base in the U.S. and one of the largest projects in the state. (Minnesota Public Radio)
• Renewable energy developer Geronimo Energy purchases a 40-acre site near Minneapolis for a community solar garden. (Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal)
• Officials will unveil a 1 MW utility-scale solar project next week near Champaign, Illinois. (Rantoul Press)
• An Indiana Ikea store will soon have the largest retail rooftop solar array in the state. (RTV6)
• Local officials in Traverse City, Michigan question whether the economics are right to justify investing in a utility-scale solar project. (Traverse City Record-Eagle)

***SPONSORED LINK: Stay current on the newest developments in the energy economy by attending the Advancing Renewables in the Midwest Conference April 24-25 in Columbia, Missouri. For registration and details: www.AdvancingRenewables.org.***

RESEARCH: A Republican-led plan in Iowa would eliminate a tax on utilities that raises $5 million per year for renewable energy research at Iowa State University and the University of Iowa. (Associated Press)

WIND:
• An Xcel Energy official says the wind market is maturing due to more efficient turbines that can capture more energy. (Minnesota Public Radio)
• A Michigan lawmaker says the state is unlikely to help resolve local disputes over wind turbine tax revenue. (Huron Daily Tribune)

COAL: EPA administrator Scott Pruitt tells a group of coal miners in Pennsylvania that the “regulatory assault” on the industry is over. (Associated Press)

OIL AND GAS: North Dakota oil production exceeded expectations in February, jumping 5 percent to more than one million barrels per day, and production is expected to be “very aggressive” this summer. (Forum News Service)

GRID: New supply and lower demand in grid operator MISO’s territory across the Midwest resulted in a capacity auction that had fewer regional disparities seen in the past two years. (RTO Insider)

TRANSPORTATION:
• Columbus, Ohio will host an electric vehicle expo later this month as part of winning the Smart City Challenge. (Columbus Business First)
• Major automakers are geared up to sell more hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, but first the U.S. needs a more robust fueling network. (Associated Press)

PIPELINES: Following the Dakota Access pipeline protests, a North Dakota lawmaker suggests tribes could restore their relationship with the state by helping pay for repairs at a historical site. (Bismarck Tribune)

COMMENTARY: A former Illinois regulator says eliminating the federal ethanol mandate would “create jobs, improve the environment, reduce the government deficit, and improve relations with Mexico and our Central American allies.” (Southern Illinoisan)

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