The Mesaba (Two Lobbyists & a Wife) coal gasification plant loan guarantees are a corporate boondoggle part of the dreadful energy bill that’s moving forward.

Leaders jump-start energy legislation

The decision not to shield MTBE manufacturers from environmental lawsuits should clear the way for negotiators to complete work on a final bill, perhaps as early as today, and send it to the House and the Senate for approval by the end of the week…

…The bill includes a raft of measures designed to promote domestic production of oil, natural gas, coal and nuclear power, spur energy conservation and strengthen the nation’s electricity grids.

A few contentious issues remain to be settled, such as whether to require 10 percent of the nation’s electricity to be generated from alternative sources, such as solar and wind power, by 2020, whether to permit a survey of offshore oil and gas resources and how much corn-based ethanol should be added to the nation’s gasoline supply.

The “raft of measures” includes a liferaft for Mesaba, the $800 million in federally guaranteed loans. Toadies ‘R’ Us — Looks like they’re having way too much fun at our expense.

Excelsior yahoos.jpg

Call and ask them to stop the $800 million in federally guaranteed loans:

> Senator Coleman: (202) 224-5641
> Senator Dayton: (202) 224-3244
> Rep. Gutknecht: 202-225-2472 (energy LA is Eric Keber)
> Rep. Kline: 202-225-2271 (energy LA is Monica Jirik)
> Rep. Ramstad: 202-225-2871 (energy LA is Adam Peterman)
> Rep. McCollum: (202) 225-6631
> Rep. Sabo: (202) 225-4755
> Rep. Kennedy: 202-225-2331 (energy LA is Michael Yost)
> Rep. Peterson: (202) 225-2165
> Rep. Oberstar: 202-225-6211 (energy LA is Kipp Johnson)


Meanwhile, the Mesaba plant moves forward in the Minnesota regulatory process, the Mesaba EQB application expected in August, “or earlier or later,” that’s the word from the EQB’s Bill Storm, who’s handling that project.

But for some inexplicable reason, Mesaba isn’t applying for the Hoyt Lakes site that was the basis for the legislative approval, it’s instead planning to site just north of Bovey. Ron Gustafson, who lives near the site, is part of a group that has put together a web site explaining the Mesaba proposal, and he forwarded the site:

The Minnesota Coal Gasification Plant

The web site includes the proposed site plans — even the EQB hasn’t posted them because when Excelsior Energy ended their tour of the proposed site, THEY CONFISCATED THE MAPS!!! They’re also on my site in an earlier post.

Here’s something to pay attention to — the legislation for this plant, 2003 Special Session H.F. 9, gave Mesaba unbelievable regulatory circumventions and perks, exempt from Certificate of Need, forced Xcel Power Purchase Agreement so Mesaba didn’t have to worry about selling the power in these times of energy glut, $10 million free money from the Renewable Development Fund, etc, etc, etc… BUT the plant legislation is premised on location on a taconite site. The area around Ron Gustafson is NOT a taconite site.

From Minnesota Coal Gasification:

40.27 (3) that is designated by the commissioner of the iron
40.28 range resources and rehabilitation board as a project that is
40.29 located in the taconite tax relief area on a site that has
40.30 substantial real property with adequate infrastructure to
40.31 support new or expanded development and that has received prior
40.32 financial and other support from the board.

What happend to their other site? This new site sure doesn’t fit the legislative criteria! IS ANYONE PAYING ATTENTION TO THIS? That should be sufficient to get the application booted out of the EQB before it even lands.

Other coal gasification plants – this section has some information on the Terre Haute plant that was shut down not long after it started because it couldn’t pay its electric bill!!!!

Yup, coal gasification power plant on the tax payers and rate payers tab… great idea…

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