BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET) — The future of energy for much of the country is clean energy or at least “cleaner.”

For day two of the Lignite Energy Council, energy experts discussed how all energy sectors in North Dakota can help this initiative.

The featured speaker was Barry Moline, the executive director of the California Municipal Utilities Association. He addressed a common-sense clean energy revolution.

In the afternoon, former Lt. Governor Brent Sanford moderated a panel on carbon management for the lignite industry.  

More than 300 people were in attendance, including Jason Laumb, who has been attending the annual conference for two decades.

“It’s been a very good conference. It’s always good to get back to Western North Dakota and to connect with minds and the plans. And to continue to understand what the main challenges are facing them so we can continue to support the industry,” said Jason Laumb, the director of the Advanced Systems Initiative for UND.

Speakers reflected on the challenges and opportunities we encounter across the energy landscape — both regionally and nationally.

This year’s meeting had a robust agenda with speakers discussing the regulatory environment surrounding lignite, the Waters of the United States rules, and taking a look at how changes in technology are impacting the energy industry.

Other speakers included Isaac Orr.

Orr says the conference is a great way to look forward when it comes to energy.

“The entire conference is obviously the Lignite Coal Energy Conference. So we’re talking about trends in the industry. Carbon capture and sequestration is a big topic here. How do we maximize the reliable power we have on the grid and minimize our environmental footprint. There’s been a huge focus on that. And the other aspect, it’s a fun conference and it’s very forward-looking,” said Issac Orr, a presenter from the Center of the American Experiment.

The lignite industry is one of the largest in the state and employs thousands of workers