Minnkota Power Cooperative

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Minnkota Power Cooperative (MPC) is a generation and transmission cooperative headquartered in Grand Forks, North Dakota. It is one of the Touchstone Energy Cooperatives, an alliance of power and energy co-operatives in the U.S.

Existing Coal Plants

Plant State Year(s) Built Capacity
Milton R. Young Station ND 1970, 1977 734 MW
Coyote Station ND 1981 450 MW

These plants are the primary sources of generation for MPC.[1]

Minnkota Power Cooperative and Square Butte Electric Cooperative

On April 24, 2006 the Department of Justice and the U.S. EPA announced a settlement of a case alleging violations of the New Source Review (NSR) provisions of the Clean Air Act requiring Minnkota Power Cooperative and Square Butte Electric Cooperative (both member-owned rural utilities) to reduce emissions of two harmful pollutants by more than 33,000 tons annually.

The plants will be reducing emissions of about 23,600 tons of sulfur dioxide (SO2) and 9,400 tons of nitrogen oxide (NOx) per year from the coal-fired Milton R. Young Station in North Dakota. This was the first NSR settlement with a power plant in the Western U.S. The settlement and the pollution control upgrades are estimated to cost the company $100 million. In 2005, the Milton R. Young Station was the second largest emitter of NOx pollution in the entire country. The settlement states that the utilities will install a new SO2 pollution flue gas desulfurization device (scrubber) to reduce SO2 emissions by at least 90 percent as well as an upgrade on an existing scrubber. Additionally, NOx reduction systems will be installed, with work beginning in 2007 and ending in 2011.

Both utilities will also fund $5 million in renewable energy projects such as wind power in North Dakota and Minnesota.[2]

Proposed Coal Plants

  • Milton Young 3 - a project under evaluation by the sponsors, MPC, Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Minnesota Power, and MDU Resources Group, but no permit applications have been submitted.[3] According to the Sierra Club, project sponsors are rumored to be planning on submitting an air quality permit application in 2008.[4] In June, 2008, the Bismarck Tribune reported that MPC would mothball plans for the plant until 2026.[5] In the meantime, the company has agreed to an arrangement with FPL Energy under which Minnkota will receive 99 MW of peak output from FPL's wind farm in Cavalier County, ND.[6]

Lobbying

MPC is a member of the Partners for Affordable Energy coalition, a pro-coal lobbying group.[7]

It is also a member of the Lignite Energy Council.[8]

Contact Details

Website: http://www.minnkota.com/

Articles and Resources

Sources

  1. Minnkota Power Cooperative, "Minnkota Power Cooperative, Inc. 2007 Annual Report", Minnkota Power Cooperative website, accessed February 2009, page 2.
  2. "North Dakota Region Citizens to Breathe Cleaner Air in $100 Million NSR Power Plant Settlement," U.S. EPA, April, 24 2006
  3. "Utilities Explore Building Power Plant Addition", WCCO website, December 7, 2005.
  4. "Stopping the Coal Rush", Sierra Club, accessed December 2007. (This is a Sierra Club list of new coal plant proposals.)
  5. Lauren Donovan, "Economic pinwheels spinning in Oliver," Bismarck Tribune, June 25, 2008
  6. Minnkota, FPL announce wind farm plans, Minnkota press release, 3/29/07
  7. Partners for Affordable Energy, "About Us: What is Partners for Affordable Energy?", Partners for Affordable Energy website, accessed February 2009.
  8. Minnkota Power Cooperative, "Minnkota Power Cooperative", Minnkota Power Cooperative website, accessed February 2009.

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