Comments on the Completeness of the Application for the Big Stone II transmission project were due Friday — I’m a day late and more than a few dollars short — but for a project that opens the door for coal, a Comment is an imperative! Here’s my Comment. Download file

An important aspect of this project is the deal reported Friday:

Deal ‘opens the door’ to wind power

Here’s the route they propose for the project, it’s the barely visible dotted red line on the left side below middle, going south from Big Stone and sort of paralleling south of the blue line east to Granite Falls:

Big Stone map.jpg

What’s wrong with this picture? It’s a 345kV going nowhere! “It’s all connected,” but this one isn’t. Why? Because they want to sneak this through in pieces — but they admit what we already know:

When operated at 345kV, the Granite Falls line will act as the first phase of a 345kV transmission plan connecting western/southwestern Minnesota to the Twin Cities.

Here’s the map of the real project, from CapX2020’s Sept. 6 announcement of “Phase I” (which has me wondering about other Phases) but the North Dakota origin at the new Belfield 500MW coal plant isn’t shown:

SW MN It's not for Wind map.jpg

To see what’s going on in the Big Stone II transmission docket click here for PUC site’s “e-Dockets” page, and in the “year” box, type in “05” and in the “number” box, type in “619” and then hit enter and you get the list. You may first have to click on the Java cup and end up with the Java advertising, but close that screen and you’ll get there.

What has to be in an Application? Lots, under the rules at Minn.R. 7849.0010 – 7849.0400, and the procedural rules are in Ch. 7829.

As an aside, if you ever wonder what would happen to the electric power supply if zombies take over, I found this while roaming, as Carter Bishop would say, that’s one answer! Methinks we’re already there…

What happens next in Big Stone? The application is either accepted or they’re told to supplement the application and then it’s accepted, and after it’s accepted, it’s time to Intervene and it moves forward to a Contested Case hearing. That’s when the fun starts because we can submit Information Requests and get all sorts of good stuff!

Here’s the corridor map that has highways and cities and such so you can get your bearings — the corridor in Minnesota is the horizontal dotted part. For a better view, get the Application at the Big Stone II site.

Big Stone corridor.jpg

Leave a Reply