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Another One Bites the Dust: Federal Judge Rejects Challenges to PolyMet Land Swap

Excellent news, as yet another lawsuit designed to delay the PolyMet mining project has been struck down in federal court. According to CBS: A federal judge has rejected challenges by several environmental groups to a land swap needed for the planned PolyMet copper-nickel mine in northeastern Minnesota. U.S. District Judge Joan Ericksen dismissed the four challenges late Monday. She ruled that the groups lacked the necessary legal standing to block the land exchange between PolyMet and the federal government. She said that’s because PolyMet had not yet secured all the necessary permits to begin work, so the groups couldn’t establish that they’d been harmed. PolyMet...

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Washington Post Poll Shows Most People Unwilling to Pay $2 Per Month Tax to Fight Climate Change

While the climate strike and Greta Thunberg may have the limelight this week, the unwavering truth of climate and energy policy remains: people are unwilling to pay the costs associated with reducing carbon dioxide emissions. A recent poll from the Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation shows that support for reducing carbon dioxide emissions withers under the slightest bit of scrutiny. The poll shows people favor taxing the wealthy to pay for increasing electricity costs, which is pretty much par for the course on every issue, and raising taxes on energy, even if that leads to higher prices. However, when people are asked to...

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Minnesota’s lags the U.S. average on Personal Income growth but leads on transfer income growth

An aging population and increased Social Security spending might mean that income from transfers will increase. But it is a source of concern that it is increasing so much faster in Minnesota. For income to be transferred, someone must first earn it. For transfers to account for a growing share of incomes, is not sustainable. ...

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Wind Produced 4 Percent Less Electricity Through June 2019 than Through June 2018, Despite More Turbines Online

Wind generation through June of 2019 was actually 4 percent lower than through June of 2018, according to Energy Information Administration data. This decline in output comes even though there are more turbines in operation today than there were at this time in 2018. The year-over-year decline in 2019, to date, is due to lower wind production in January, February, March, and June, compared to 2018. The decline is likely due to a variety of factors including weather, turbine degradation, and possibly curtailment of wind facilities when the grid was constrained. Weather is the most likely culprit for lower wind output year-to-date...

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Minnesota’s unemployment rate is down from July to August, but the number of people unemployed is up 20% over the year

Over the last year, Minnesota's working age population has grown faster than that of the United States generally, but employment has increase more slowly. As a result, while the number of unemployed rose across the country by 1.3%, in Minnesota it increased by 20.1%. ...

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