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Gulf Coast Oil Spill May Be Largest Since 2010 BP Disaster

An oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico last week may be the largest in the U.S. since the 2010 blowout at BP Plc’s Macondo well that sank the Deepwater Horizon rig and killed 11 people.  LLOG Exploration Co. reported 7,950 to 9,350 barrels of oil were released Oct. 11 to Oct. 12 from subsea infrastructure about 40 miles (64 kilometers) southeast of Venice, Louisiana

Salvation through Fermentation

Producing economically viable biofuels from biomass other than corn, however, is more complicated. Many biofuels researchers, including those at the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC) based at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, are now focused on making biofuels from low-input crops such as switchgrass and poplar.

Study to explore Illinois' energy future

The Illinois Commerce Commission has launched an 18-month study to explore the use of emerging technologies to improve the state's electric grid. The "NextGrid: Illinois' Utility of the Future" study is the collaborative effort of the ICC, Ameren Illinois, ComEd, and the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Illinois, the Herald-Whig reported.It's a "consumer-focused collaborative study to transform Illinois' energy landscape and economy," said ICC Chairman Brien J. Sheahan.

Wind power to overtake coal power in Texas

Wind energy is expected to overtake coal in Texas after Friday's news that two large coal-fired power plants are set to close in the next year. The utility firm Luminant announced that it would close the Sandow Power Plant and the Big Brown Power Plant in early 2018.

Trump orders EPA to back off RFS changes

President Donald Trump intervened personally with the Environmental Protection Agency amid pressure from Republicans in the politically important state of Iowa who worried the agency was poised to weaken biofuel quotas, three people familiar with the discussions said.

Trump’s plan to back oil companies would hurt rural jobs and the people who voted for him

President Donald Trump's proposed cuts in biofuels will hurt American farmers and create a "cannibalistic" battle between middle American farmers and Big Oil, say four Republican governors in states that backed Trump in the 2016 election. The proposal by Trump's Environmental Protection Agency would allow fuel producers to use less corn, soybean and other agricultural biomass in gasoline and other fuels.

As energy transactions become more complex, Chicago firm seeks to simplify

A Chicago-area startup is garnering the attention of major industry players with a cloud-based platform for settling energy trades in the decentralized, digital 21st century. Aquilon Energy Services, based in Lisle, Illinois, has developed an Energy Settlement Network that leverages the power of web-based communication technology and big-data analytics to make it easier for energy companies and other firms to trade commodities like power, oil and natural gas.The need for this kind of service is growing.

The U.S. solar industry's new growth region: Trump country

Data provided to Reuters by GTM Research, a clean energy market information firm, shows that eight of the 10 fastest-growing U.S. solar markets between the second quarters of 2016 and 2017 were Western, Midwestern or Southern states that voted for Trump, with Alabama and Mississippi topping the list. And solar firms are ramping up investments in these regions, signaling their faith that key renewable energy incentives will remain in place for years to come.

Lawmakers slam DOE’s proposal to help coal, nuclear power

Lawmakers used a Thursday hearing with Energy Secretary Rick Perry to criticize his recent proposal to prop up coal and nuclear plants with higher payments for their electricity. Numerous Democrats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s energy subpanel, and one Republican, said the plan would be unnecessarily disruptive to energy market and prop up power plants that aren't competitive.“You are distorting the market, damaging the environment and delivering preferential treatment to favored industries,” Rep. Frank Pallone Jr.

Facing Challenges in DC, Renewable Energy Stakeholders Turn to States

Renewable energy advocates and stakeholders have found the current environment in Washington, DC, to be quite challenging, as it is increasingly complicated by the Trump administration’s moves to bolster fossil fuel technologies, while simultaneously attempting to diminish the benefits of cleaner alternatives.

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