Daily digest

North Dakota gets day in court over Minnesota’s coal law

COAL: Arguments will begin today in North Dakota’s lawsuit against Minnesota’s restrictions on new and imported coal-fired electricity. (Minnesota Public Radio)

ALSO: American Electric Power CEO Nick Akins says coal is “out of the picture” as the utility plans for its future. (Columbus Business First)

***SPONSORED LINK: Register today for the FREE Great Plains Clean Energy Transmission Summit, taking place October 21 in Saint Paul. Join public and private sector leaders — along with moderators from Midwest Energy News — in a debate over the future of clean energy and the electric grid. Breakfast and lunch included.***

OIL: North Dakota officials say they will make changes to state policies on informing the public about oil spills following an 11-day delay in publicizing a 20,000 barrel pipeline spill, and police say a 25-year-old man who died in an oilfield accident was exposed to hydrogen sulfide gas. (Bismarck Tribune)

NATURAL GAS: GM announces a new Chevy Impala that can switch seamlessly between running on compressed natural gas and gasoline, a new fueling facility in Ohio is part of UPS’s strategy to increase its use of natural gas as a truck fuel, technology that will also be promoted at a summit in Minnesota today. (Detroit Free Press, Toledo Blade, Minneapolis Star Tribune)

WASTE-TO-ENERGY: Why burning garbage for energy, while controversial in the U.S., is regarded as a great environmental achievement in Sweden; and a biogas plant struggles with Flint, Michigan’s declining population. (Midwest Energy News, MLive)

SYNGAS: Developers of a proposed Ohio plant that will be able to convert biomass, petcoke or coal into synthetic gas hope to begin construction in 2014. (Lima News)

FRACKING: Backers of a ballot measure to ban fracking in Michigan target a county where drilling permits are already being issued. (Detroit Free Press)

FRAC SAND: Minnesota officials will set up air quality monitoring in Winona, a city at the center of the state’s sand-mining boom. (Winona Daily News)

EFFICIENCY: An Ohio mall will undergo $4 million in energy improvements utilizing PACE financing. (Youngstown Vindicator)

COMMENTARY: Why Elon Musk is a utility executive’s worst nightmare. (Quartz)

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