345kV Wilmarth – Faribault – North Rochester (N of Pine Island)…

Filed under:Uncategorized — posted by admin on September 23, 2019 @ 6:12 pm

That’s the CapX 2020 345kV line crossing Minnesota’s Zumbro River at the White Bridge Road looking towards the “North Rochester” substation just north of Pine Island. Now they’re proposing yet ANOTHER 345kV line coming in from the west to “North Rochester.” It’s called the Wilmarth (Mankato, the garbage burner and gas plants there)-Faribault-North Rochester line, proposed for the “B” list (which typically moves up to the “A” list the following year) in the 2020 MTEP report.

Here’s the chart, sortable (very interesting by state and by “Geographic Location — meaning company), this line is on the bottom of the spreadsheet, highlighted in red, with no cost estimate:

Per the MISO spreadsheet:

Studied during the MN 44 exploratory analysis, this project adds a 345 kV line between Mankato and Rochester. The line will stop at a new 345 kV yard in Faribault to support the local 100 kV system.

Low voltages exist in the Owatonna and Faribault areas during P2 and P6 events. Load growth has brought the system to capacity. In addition to this, overloads due to future high wind scenarios occur throughout south central MN.

In the 2017 Biennial Electric Transmission Planning Report, the project was REJECTED as an “alternative” to the ongoing Wilmarth-Huntley 345kV line, but here it comes again?? From that Report:

Alternatives:  Several solutions such as rebuilding the South Bend to Blue Earth to Huntley 161 kV, a new Freeborn to West Owatonna 161 kV circuit, and a new Wilmarth to North Rochester 345 kV circuit were also studies to relieve the congestion observed.

This is absurd. It’s just like the WIREs-WRAO Report from 1998. The WRAO report rejected 20+ “alternatives” for the be-all and end-all of transmission, Alternative “3j,” the Arrowhead Transmission Project:

… and then slowly but surely they’ve been building each and every rejected “alternative” ever since. Here we go again, another transmission line that isn’t needed, but that will facilitate export.

We do NOT need another transmission line in southern Minnesota.



image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace