Coal Creek Station could stay open with potential buyer

Coal Creek Station
Coal Creek Station(KFYR)
Published: Mar. 25, 2021 at 11:48 AM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Gov. Doug Burgum announced Thursday there’s now a potential buyer for the Coal Creek Station and transmission line, which nearly a year ago Great River Energy announced would be closing by 2022 because they couldn’t find anyone to purchase it.

If bought, the station would stay open for business.

The station, which is the state’s largest coal-fired plant, employs 240 people and the nearby Falkirk Mine has about 450 employees, which is why those living in and near Underwood have been concerned about the plants closing and potentially losing their jobs.

Great River Energy said the potential buyer is interested in continuing carbon capture projects.

The governor’s office attributes the interest in the plant to their advancements in carbon dioxide storage and a recently signed bill that gives a sales tax exemption on carbon dioxide storage.

“We’ve created a tax and regulatory environment that makes North Dakota an attractive place for companies to conduct responsible and sustainable energy development,” said Lt. Gov. Brent Sanford.

Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., says he’s been working to ensure the plant stays open as well, saying, “the employees at the plant and the Falkirk Mine help keep the lights on with affordable and reliable power.”

Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., said in a statement: “I am glad to see progress is being made to find a buyer for Coal Creek Station who will keep it up and running. North Dakotans need Coal Creek, and the American people need coal. I hope the negotiations continue successfully and a deal is able to be struck soon.”

Negotiations on the sale are still pending.

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