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AEP to stop burning coal at three power plants

COAL: In a settlement announced yesterday, American Electric Power will stop burning coal at three power plants in Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky; and St. Louis-based Peabody Energy is under investigation by the SEC for its role in developing the Prairie State Energy Campus in illinois. (Columbus Dispatch, St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

ALSO: Indiana lawmakers reject an amendment that would prohibit utilities from purchasing coal at above-market rates from their own subsidiaries. (Evansville Courier & Press)

***SPONSORED LINK: Register Now for the 2013 Sustainability Summit & Exposition, March 6-8 in Milwaukee. Keynote speakers include Will Allen, Ed Begley, Jr., Dr. James Hansen and Michael Mann. ***

WIND: Experts say better policy tools and community engagement are necessary for offshore wind to proceed in the U.S.; and developers of a Wisconsin wind farm appeal state regulators’ rejection of a construction permit, saying the project can meet state noise standards. (Midwest Energy News, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

CLIMATE: President Obama acts locally on climate change, the White House says it won’t propose a carbon tax, a coalition of energy business leaders call for market incentives to cut carbon emissions, and a new study says a warmer, wetter climate is already impacting labor capacity. (National Journal, The Hill, ClimateWire, Bloomberg)

CHICAGO: A tire-burning power plant in the city’s southern suburbs, which lawmakers in 2010 proposed to classify as “renewable energy,” will shut down permanently. (Chicago Tribune)

SOLAR: Outgoing Energy Secretary Steven Chu says solar will be cheaper than coal and natural gas within the next decade; and Naperville, Illinois aims to simplify its permitting process for solar installations. (Motherboard, Chicago Tribune)

SMART METERS: Michigan’s attorney general says DTE Energy’s $87 opt-out fee for smart meters isn’t justified. (AnnArbor.com)

OIL: Lawsuits claim that members of a North Dakota tribe were cheated out of more than $1 billion in a rush for drilling rights. (ProPublica)

NATURAL GAS: A new report says natural gas will eventually account for half of U.S. electricity production, and an industry analyst warns policymakers aren’t doing enough to prepare. (Kansas City Star, EnergyWire)

FRAC SAND: A bill in the Minnesota legislature would set minimum standards for frac sand mining. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

MICHIGAN: Gov. Rick Snyder’s traveling energy policy forum makes a stop in Grand Rapids. (MLive.com)

COMMENTARY: Why the Illinois Sierra Club went from supporting a fracking ban to working with industry on a regulatory framework. (Huffington Post)

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