Finally, the South Dakota to Minnesota transmission line is announced.
Transmission equals coal, the “benefits” of transmission are realized when coal displaces natural gas, when coal can be shipped anywhere:
ICF – MISO Benefits Analysis Study
And that can only happen with a massive transmission build-out, the likes of which we’re seeing with CapX 2020, and with a 765kV transmission web waiting in the wings:
RGOS – Regional Generation Outlet Study
We weren’t allowed to address coal and transmission lines from the Dakotas to Minnesota in the CapX Certificate of Need proceeding, even though their own map shows the full plan, from the Dakotas to Madison, yes, old news, but here we go again — see those transmission lines starting in the Dakotas?
Finally, they’ve announced the South Dakota transmission lines, in this case, from Ellendale, SD to Big Stone, SD:
$300 million transmission line project to be discussed
By Jeff Natalie-Lees, firstname.lastname@example.org
11:16 p.m. CST, February 23, 2013
One of the largest electrical transmission line projects proposed in years will be discussed at five open house meetings this week.
The line from Big Stone City to Ellendale, N.D., would cover 150 to 175 miles and cut across land owned by several hundred farmers. The cost is estimated at $300 million to $340 million.
“It is definitely one of the biggest ones we have participated in,” said Mark Hanson, spokesman for Montana-Dakota Utilities.
The line, which would be jointly operated by Montana-Dakota Utilities and Otter Tail Power Company, would provide many benefits to the region, including providing transmission capacity for wind energy.
The meetings are designed to allow people to see the proposed corridors for the line and ask questions.
“We will be taking all this feedback from landowners and agencies and developing a preferred route,” Hanson said. “That is what we need when we file the route permit with the South Dakota and North Dakota public utilities commissions.”
Construction on the line would begin in 2016 and take three years to complete. In the meantime, the utilities will be working on securing easements from landowners and completing permits.
Landowners who sign an easement will receive a one-time payment for purchase of land at pole sites, Hanson said. The poles will be between 700 feet to 1,200 feet apart.
While precautions will be made to avoid damaging any crops during the construction of the poles and lines, landowners will be compensated for any damage, Hanson said.
The line has been recommended by the Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator, the independent regulatory agency for electrical transmission in 15 states and parts of Canada, as a “multivalue project.”
A study determined the need for the the line, Hanson said, and provide benefits such as:
While landowners are the most affected by the transmission line, everyone is invited to the meetings to learn more about the project, Hanson said.
Open House meetings are scheduled in the following towns:
Groton: 5:30 to 7 p.m. Monday, Groton Area School; presentation at 6 p.m.
Ellendale, N.D.: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Fireside Restaurant and Lounge; presentation at noon.
Britton: 5:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Britton-Hecla High School; presentation at 6 p.m.
Webster: 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, The Galley; presentation at noon.
Milbank: 5:30 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Milbank Visitors Center; presentation at 6 p.m.
So why did it take so long? Looks like it’s timed to begin as Minnesota ends…