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Buyer announced for Coal Creek Power Station

Coal Creek Station
Coal Creek Station(KFYR)
Published: Jun. 30, 2021 at 3:10 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - After years of searching and the looming threats of closure, the Coal Creek Power Station in Underwood has found a new owner.

One year after it was announced the plant would be shutting down in 2022, North Dakota-based Rainbow Energy LLC said they will be buying the plant.

The new company hopes to have the deal finalized by the end of 2021.

In the coming years, they hope to implement renewable energy into the power line and install carbon capture.

“I’m not looking to prop up coal just to prop up coal. I’m looking to take coal to the next level. And through the innovation of carbon capture, a world-class project, is what gets me excited... This is a win-win across the board. Nobody loses in this transaction,” Rainbow Energy Marketing Corporation President Stacy L. Tschider said.

In May 2020, Great River Energy said they were closing the plant after they were unable to find any buyers.

“Coal Creek is the perfect acquisition for a creative company like Rainbow which knows how to market energy, understands the American energy marketplace, and appreciates the value of the reliable, low-cost energy we have here in our state,” said Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D.

The following year would see Coal Creek Power Station turn into a top priority for state leaders.

“This is a great day for North Dakota, a big win for U.S. energy security and reliability, and a huge sigh of relief for the residents of McLean County, Underwood and surrounding communities in coal country who depend on the jobs and economic activity generated by Coal Creek and the nearby Falkirk Mine,” Gov. Doug Burgum, R-N.D., said. “It’s also great news for the regional power grid and consumers who depend on the reliable, affordable electricity that coal provides.”

But it’s not just the plant that’s being saved. The mine which helps the plant was also surrounded with mystery and concern for the future.

“Coal Creek Station is one of the most efficient and critical baseload power plants in our region, and the employees at both the plant and the Falkirk Mine do a tremendous job providing affordable, reliable energy,” said Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D.

Over the last legislative session, lawmakers passed a package of major infrastructure bills which included funds and tax breaks for the coal industry.

Rainbow Energy Marketing Corporation President Stacy L. Tschider said no North Dakota tax dollars were used to purchase the plant.

The terms of the deal are confidential.

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