ELECTRIC VEHICLES: St. Paul, Minnesota’s city council unanimously passes zoning rules requiring new surface parking lots with more than 15 spots to include wiring and panel spacing for future EV chargers. (MPR News)

ALSO: The nation’s rollout of public fast-charging stations is accelerating, with almost 600 stations added during the first three months of the year and Missouri among the states making the most progress. (Bloomberg)

SOLAR:

  • A suburban Chicago manufacturer shows off a solar-powered microgrid it says has already saved it $1.8 million in lost production time since coming online late last year. (Capital News Illinois)
  • After almost nine hours of testimony, county officials approve a permit for a massive 600-acre solar project north of Lawrence, Kansas. (Flatland)
  • Wisconsin’s Dane County is the first in the country to earn “platinum” status from a federal program encouraging local policies that support solar development. (Journal Sentinel)  

INDUSTRY: The U.S. Department of Energy announces $28 million in grants for research aimed at decarbonizing steel production, including projects at the University of Minnesota and Illinois’ Argonne National Laboratory. (Canary Media)

PIPELINES:

BIOGAS:

  • A Michigan economic development fund approves $40 million in bonds for a proposed facility to turn food waste and manure into renewable natural gas. (WOOD-TV) 
  • University of Minnesota researchers are working to develop productive uses of hog manure, including renewable natural gas, but funding for larger demonstration projects is needed. (MinnPost)

NUCLEAR: Michigan’s efforts to restart a shuttered nuclear power plant puts the state at the forefront of a resurgent interest in nuclear energy. (Utility Dive)

GRID: About 40 people sign a petition opposing Ameren’s plans to upgrade its electric grid in central Illinois, mostly by rebuilding existing lines. (Daily Journal)

COMMENTARY: Michigan regulators’ denial of a utility’s request to recoup expenses from uneconomic coal plants sets an example for other states, clean energy policy advocates write. (RMI)

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Dan has two decades' experience working in print, digital and broadcast media. Prior to joining the Vxartnews as managing editor in December 2017, he oversaw watchdog reporting at the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, part of the USA Today Network, and before that spent several years as a freelance journalist covering energy, business and technology. Dan is a former Midwest Energy News journalism fellow and a member of Investigative Reporters and Editors. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and mass communications from University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.