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Ridenour receives Touchstone Energy Cooperatives Distingushed Service Award

Aaron Ridenour, manager of marketing and business development at Prairie Power, Inc., received the Touchstone Energy® Cooperatives Distinguished Service Award during the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association Annual Meeting held in New Orleans, February 15-21. The Distinguished Service Award is the highest honor bestowed by Touchstone Energy Cooperatives and is presented annually to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to ...Read More

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Carson elected NRECA secretary-treasurer

Phil Carson (left) a board director for Tri-County Electric Cooperative, Mount Vernon, was elected secretary-treasurer of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) at the organization’s annual meeting on Feb. 20, 2013 in New Orleans. Carson joins newly elected NRECA officers Mel Coleman, NRECA board vice-president and CEO of North Arkansas Electric Cooperative; Curtis Nolan, NRECA board president and board ...Read More

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Hempen represents Illinois Youth Tour at national meeting

Sarah Hempen of Columbia rep­resented Monroe Electric Co-Operative in Washington, D.C., during the annual “Youth to Washington” Tour, June 15-22. She and other Illinois students met with Congressman Jerry Costello and were among 75 rural Illinois youth leaders selected for the trip. During the trip, Hempen was chosen by her peers to represent Illinois on the Youth Leadership Council (YLC) ...Read More

Wind energy top source for new generation in 2012

The U.S. wind energy industry had its strongest year ever in 2012, the American Wind Energy Association announced today, ­installing a record 13,124 megawatts (MW) of electric generating capacity, ­leveraging $25 billion in private investment and achieving over 60,000 MW of ­cumulative wind capacity. That’s enough wind power to power the ­equivalent of almost 15 million homes. Wind energy for ...Read More

Biodiesel production tops 1 billion gallons

The U.S. biodiesel industry broke the billion-gallon mark in 2012 for the second consecutive year, according to year-end production figures from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The National Biodiesel Board (NBB) noted that the total volume of nearly 1.1 billion gallons exceeded the 2011 production by 6 million gallons. December production totaled just 59 million gallons, the lowest monthly ...Read More

Illinois camping and hunting website

You can now make reservations for campsites and shelters for many Illinois Department of Natural Resources sites for 2013. Reservations can be made online through the ReserveAmerica website at using a Visa or MasterCard. For more information, check the IDNR website at Illinois fishing and hunting licenses for 2013 are also available online. Illinois fishing, hunting and sportsman’s ...Read More

Court won’t rehear EPA on air rule

A federal appeals court will not reopen a decision that struck down the Environmental Protection Agency’s sweeping Cross-State Air Pollution Rule. In a two-sentence order released Jan. 24, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia denied EPA’s request for reconsideration by the full court. A three-judge panel of the circuit court last August said the EPA ...Read More

Sen. Kirk says never ever give up

Almost exactly a year after ­visiting with Illinois electric cooperative ­leaders and then days later suffering a serious stroke, Illinois Republican Senator Mark Kirk returned to work. Kirk battled back through what he describes as “some of the darkest hours of my life.” “In an instant my world changed and I faced the prospect of never walking again,” said Kirk. “I’m ...Read More

Volunteers needed for Shawnee National Forest spring workdays

This spring volunteers will be joining Shawnee National Forest employees in stewardship efforts at several locations on the Hidden Springs and Mississippi Bluff Ranger Districts. Each workday will encompass fun, hands-on teamwork with a backdrop of budding trees, ­blooming wildflowers and much more. The workdays are scheduled in March, April and May. Call the Shawnee Volunteer Corps at 618-833-8576 (ext. ...Read More

Ameren leaving the generation business

Ameren Corp. operates five coal-fired and three gas-fired generating plants in Illinois, but it recently announced its intentions to exit the merchant generation business because of weak power prices and the increasing cost of environmental compliance. The merchant generation business is operated by the Ameren Energy Resources subsidiary, which was formed in 2000 with Illinois’ deregulation of the electricity market. ...Read More