Excelsior Energy’s Mesaba Project, the coal gasification plant that will not die, is returning to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission on August 14, 2012.

Notice – August 14, 2012 PUC Meeting

At that time, they’ll address whether the original project’s permits apply to this project, and whether this one, under Minn. Stat. 216B. 1694, requires additional environmental review:

**6.     E6472/GS-06-668 Excelsior Energy, Inc.
In the Matter of the Joint LEPGP Site Permit, HVTL Route Permit and Pipeline (Partial
Exemption) Route Permit Application for the Mesaba Energy Project in Itasca County.
Should the Commission find, pursuant to Minnesota Statutes 216B. 1694 subdivision 3, that the
site and route permits issued on March 12, 2010 for the Mesaba Energy Project are deemed valid
for a natural gas fired plant located at the same site and that no additional environmental review
is required under applicable state rules?

This docket has been one of the longest strangest trips ever, a coal gasification plant that wasn’t needed yet fed by state and federal money, using CO2 capture and storage that does not, can not, and will not exist.  Here’s some history:

Health Benefits of Coal (ya gotta read this one, HILARIOUS!)

Mesaba – Extend the Hearing! (the hearing was a farce)

And why are we here on the 14th?  The PUC granted a Site Permit to the project f/k/a Mesaba Project, the coal gasification plant:

ALJ Recommendation – Mesaba Site Permit

PUC Order and Site Permit – March 2010

Then it starts getting complicated, Excelsior sends PUC letter saying it wants confirmation that the permits issued for the Mesaba Project coal gasification plant are valid for a natural gas plant, and that it would require no further environmental review:

Excelsior Energy Request – May 31, 2012

Notice of Comment Period

Comment –

Commerce CommentsSierra Club Comment

And then Excelsior chimes again disclosing not much of anything about their “plan” for this gas plant:

Excelsior’s Response to Commerce IRs June 26, 2012

And then the Comment period is extended and we get another bite:

MCGP Reply Comment

And now we’re off to the races…

In the Duluth News Tribune:

Feds say no more money for Iron Range Excelsior Power Plant


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