Daily Digest

Michigan wind project expansion to start construction three years ahead of schedule

POLICY: While the bill is unlikely to pass, Michigan Democrats say a proposal for a 50 percent renewable energy standard is intended to “set up a new frontier of where we should be looking.” (Midwest Energy News)

WIND: Michigan regulators approve a plan for Consumers Energy to start construction on a wind project three years ahead of schedule. (Associated Press)

PIPELINES:
• Oil shippers say they were surprised by a judge’s ruling this week ordering further environmental review of the Dakota Access pipeline, but they are optimistic it won’t cause a long-term disruption of service. (Associated Press)
• Advocates are preparing for the next round of deliberations over the Dakota Access pipeline, hoping to shut down the flow of oil. (Reuters)

SOLAR:
• An Illinois school district says it could generate new revenue and lower maintenance costs by building a solar project at a former landfill site. (Lake County News-Sun)
• Students at the University of Missouri are researching lighter, more portable and cheaper solar cells to be deployed in developing countries. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

NUCLEAR:
• A new analysis shows more than half of the nuclear reactors in the U.S. are losing money, with losses totaling about $2.9 billion a year. (Bloomberg)
• Ohio State University and the University of Michigan will each receive about $1.5 million from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop nuclear research projects. (Toledo Blade)

ELECTRIC VEHICLES: Minnesota’s Department of Transportation installs signs promoting electric vehicle charging stations along a portion of the Interstate 94 corridor. (WCCO)

GRID:
• Utility executives convening at an annual conference say they hope a Department of Energy grid study will reaffirm that “changes to the U.S. power mix do not threaten reliability.” (Utility Dive)
• A survey by grid operator MISO says the Midwest and central U.S. corridor has ample electricity capacity to meet demand over the next five years. (E&E News, subscription)

FINANCE: A youth sports center near Cincinnati is the first facility to finance energy efficiency upgrades and solar panels through Ohio’s Property Assess Clean Energy program. (Cincinnati Business Courier)

COAL: Representatives with the North Dakota coal industry say there is a shortage of workers with highly technical skills. (Bismarck Tribune)

COMMENTARY:
• A wind advocacy group says easing restrictions on turbine setbacks in Ohio will “bring new opportunities for prosperity to rural communities throughout the state.” (American Wind Energy Association blog)
• Clean energy advocates say it’s time Ohio lawmakers reject the bailouts of outdated and uneconomical coal plants and focus on the future. (Natural Resources Defense Council)
• A Minnesota advocacy group says “now is not the time to rest on our laurels” when it comes to advancing clean energy. (MinnPost)

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