A key part of Rainbow Energy’s purchase of the Coal Creek station is the carbon capture and storage that will take place there, said Senator John Hoeven, R-ND.
Hoeven spoke with members of the Minot media on Wednesday after news broke that the Bismarck-based company is buying the Coal Creek station from Great River Energy, a purchase that will keep the Falkirk plant and mine operating. He was in Minot later that day for a drought meeting with farmers and ranchers.
The Coal Creek station is located between Underwood and Washburn and the Falkirk mine is adjacent.
Carbon capture and sequestration technologies allow energy producers to capture CO2 at source to prevent it from being released into the atmosphere. Once the CO2 is captured, it can be stored deep underground or used for enhanced oil recovery or other beneficial uses, according to information from Hoeven’s office.
Regarding carbon capture and storage, he said Rainbow Energy will be able to do just that. “Because we passed a 45Q tax credit that provides $ 50 per tonne for every tonne of CO2 they sequester. “
“It’s also about going forward and building our energy here as a powerhouse in North Dakota, because it continues that reliable, low-cost coal-fired power for our region, but it also provides the best environmental stewardship, so we »re-create the code on carbon capture. What I mean by developing the code is making it economically viable – commercially viable – and that’s what this $ 50 per tonne credit does ”, said Hoeven.
The 45Q tax credit provides a source of income for carbon capture, use and storage (CCUS) projects of up to $ 50 per tonne of CO2 permanently stored, or up to $ 35 per tonne of CO2 stored and used for enhanced oil recovery, according to information from The Hoeven office.
“This is really something where we are leading the country. That’s what the country is trying to do: figure out how to make carbon capture work. It’s the kind of project that does that and that’s why it’s so important ”, Hoeven added.
In addition to jobs and affordable energy, he said it was for safety. “Energy security is national security and it’s just exciting that North Dakota is leading the way,” Hoeven said.
Hoeven’s work to crack the code on CCUS technologies that will allow Rainbow Energy to deploy a CCUS project at Coal Creek Station in addition to the direct income stream from the 45Q tax credit will also provide loan guarantees from the US Department of l Energy and the US Department of Agriculture, according to information from his office.
“We’ve been working on this for about two years. Hoeven said to find a solution to keep the Coal Creek station and the Falkirk mine in operation. This work includes Great River Energy, Rainbow Energy, and North American Coal.
He said he had worked with Rainbow Energy for many years and had seen them build “that big business in North Dakota.” Rainbow Energy is an energy distributor which sells electricity wholesale.
“It’s a huge and very innovative company”, he said of Rainbow Energy’s purchase of the coal-fired power plant, mining and deployment of a carbon capture project.
“They will keep the employees at the plant so North American Coal can keep their employees at the mine as well. This allows both the plant and the mine to function. Hoeven said.
He said they hope the transition will be closed later this year. He said the plant and mine would operate throughout the transfer from Great River Energy to Rainbow Energy.