Daily Digest

Minnesota county becomes first in state to ban frac sand mining

FRAC SAND: Local officials in an eastern Minnesota county narrowly vote to become the first to ban frac sand mining there. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

POLICY:
• Clean energy advocates are optimistic that a major energy bill in Illinois will pass this week after key compromises are reached over demand charges and coal supports. (Midwest Energy News)
• Energy reforms moving through the Michigan legislature have split business groups and House Republicans over proposed changes to the state’s electric choice market. (MiBiz)

***SPONSORED LINK: Exhibit or sponsor to connect to thousands of attendees regarding renewable energy and sustainability at The Energy Fair, June 16-18 in Custer, WI and coming soon to Saint Paul, MN September, 2017. Exhibitor registration opens November 30.***

SOLAR:
• An Iowa co-op plans a new net metering policy and demand charge in part to rebuff efforts to expand solar power in the area. (Midwest Energy News)
• A property developer plans to install a $600,000 rooftop solar system on a major office building in Cincinnati. (Cincinnati Business Courier)
• Officials in a Minnesota county reverse course and vote to approve a 28-acre solar project. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

EFFICIENCY: Illinois entrepreneurs rethink and redesign traditional water heaters that also cut buildings’ energy use. (Midwest Energy News) 

BIOFUELS: The U.S. EPA increases the quota for the amount of biofuel to be blended next year into gasoline and diesel supplies under the Renewable Fuel Standard. (Bloomberg News)

WIND: A planned 103-megawatt wind project in South Dakota has cleared the permitting phase. (Rapid City Journal)

PIPELINES:
• Dakota Access pipeline protesters plan to stay at their encampment in North Dakota despite federal officials giving them a Dec. 5 deadline to move to a designated area. (Minnesota Public Radio)
• The protesters will not be forcibly removed, though they may face violations for trespassing. (Reuters)
• The North Dakota sheriff leading the response to pipeline protesters defends officers’ actions using force against the crowds. (Associated Press)
• More than 30 protesters are arrested on trespassing charges after forming a prayer circle at a North Dakota mall. (Minnesota Public Radio)
• Concerns grow over President-elect Trump’s owning stock in the company developing the Dakota Access pipeline. (Associated Press)

OIL AND GAS:
• Clean energy groups are ramping up efforts to block natural gas infrastructure projects as renewable energy becomes economically competitive. (ClimateWire)
• A Minnesota oil refinery will have its fourth owner in six years after a planned $4.1 billion acquisition. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

GRID: DTE Energy plans a major project in southeast Michigan to improve grid reliability there. (MLive)

COAL:
• Michigan’s largest electric utility recently closed three coal units and plans to retire another eight by 2030, despite the outcome of the presidential election. (MLive)
• Unless Congress acts during the lame-duck session remaining this year, thousands of retired miners and their families would lose union-negotiated health benefits. (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
• Ohio coal sales were down 31 percent last year, falling below $1 billion for the first time since 2007, though industry groups remain optimistic under a Trump presidency. (Columbus Dispatch)
• Rising coal prices have helped defuse a dispute between Peabody Energy and some of its creditors as the company moves through bankruptcy. (Reuters)

CYBERSECURITY: Michigan regulators look to develop rules designed to toughen utilities’ defenses against cyberattacks. (Associated Press)

COMMENTARY:
• An optimistic future for pipeline development under President-elect Trump is good news for North Dakota. (Bismarck Tribune)
• “For the good of the environment and Quad-City economy, Illinois General Assembly must, this week, ram through the Exelon bailout.” (Quad-City Times)
• Missouri has a chance to boost its economy by investing in its electric grid infrastructure. (St. Louis Business Journal)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *