Ohio clean energy fight intensifies as vote nears

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Faith leaders are highlighting a historic church honored for energy efficiency improvements as they seek an audience with Republican Gov. John Kasich (KAY'-sik) on legislation halting phase-in of Ohio's renewable energy and efficiency standards.

The House Public Utilities Committee plans a vote Wednesday on a bill pausing rollout of targets for how much renewable energy, such as solar and wind, Ohio utilities must generate by 2025.

The bill's opponents have stepped up efforts this week. They aired a television ad, released research findings and lodged protests aimed at drawing the attention of lawmakers and the governor.

Backers say Ohio's clean energy standards need to be modernized to account for such factors as an explosion in U.S. shale-gas exploration.

Opponents argue such standards create jobs and provide alternatives to coal.