Daily digest

Midwest Generation’s Illinois coal plants have a buyer

COAL: Four Illinois coal plants owned by Midwest Generation will be purchased by a New Jersey company if a bankruptcy deal is approved. (Chicago Tribune)

EFFICIENCY: A privately-run PACE financing program in Michigan has expanded in size to serve nearly 1.5 million residents, and is poised to add the state’s most populous county. (Midwest Energy News)

***SPONSORED LINK: Don’t forget today’s FREE Great Plains Clean Energy Transmission Summit 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.***

SOLAR: A massive solar farm at the Indianapolis Airport has started generating power. (Indianapolis Star)

NUCLEAR: Xcel Energy defends upgrades to a Minnesota nuclear plant after costs more than double. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

OIL: A train carrying crude oil and propane derails and catches fire in western Canada, and Exxon still has no timeline for restarting a pipeline that ruptured in Arkansas earlier this year. (Associated Press, InsideClimate News)

FRACKING: Anti-fracking groups call on Ohio Gov. John Kasich to ban wastewater injection wells in the state. (Columbus Business First)

FRAC SAND: A bill in the Wisconsin legislature would prevent local governments from imposing tighter restrictions on frac sand mining. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

TRANSMISSION: Farmers in Iowa are divided over transmission lines to help expand wind energy. (Radio Iowa)

OHIO: An investigation finds that third-party “submeter” companies allowed by Ohio law are charging apartment and condo dwellers 5 to 40 times more for power than they would normally pay. (Columbus Dispatch)

WIND: Wind farms become a tourist attraction in Michigan. (Livingston Daily)

HYDROPOWER: Minnesota researchers help test hydro turbines that are designed to generate power from river currents. (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

CLIMATE: Iowa scientists warn climate change will bring longer dry spells and more intense rainfall to the state. (Des Moines Register)

***SPONSORED LINK: Register today for the Midwest’s largest energy efficiency event, the Midwest Energy Solutions Conference, taking place January 14-16 in Chicago. Use Code MWEN25off for $25 off just for Midwest Energy News readers.***

BIOFUELS: The oil and gas industry threatens to sue the EPA if it delays announcing biofuel mandate levels for 2014. (Des Moines Register)

COMMENTARY: The Cleveland Plain Dealer says a bill to weaken Ohio’s energy laws deserves “a proper burial.”

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