Basin Electric approved for two gas-fired plant additions in North Dakota

The North Dakota Public Service Commission (PSC) on April 29 approved permits for three Basin Electric Power Cooperative projects, including additions to two gas-fired power plants.

The PSC approved Basin Electric’s applications for Certificates of Site Compatibility for Phase III of both the Lonesome Creek Station, a natural gas-based peaking station sited west of Watford City, N.D., and Pioneer Generation Station, a natural gas-based peaking station located west of Williston, N.D.

The permit for Phase III of the Lonesome Creek Station project would allow for the addition of up to three additional 45-MW simple cycle natural gas-fired combustion turbines, Basin noted in an April 30 statement. The new turbines will be adjacent to three existing 45-MW turbines at the location, bringing the plant’s total generation capacity to 270 MW. Construction of this new capacity is slated to begin in May 2015 with commercial operation anticipated in May 2016.

Phase III of the Pioneer Generation Station project will consist of 111 MW of additional peaking capacity, provided by 12 natural gas-based reciprocating engines that each have a generating capacity of 9.22 MW. Construction is slated to begin in May 2015 with commercial operation also anticipated in May 2016.

The PSC also approved an application for Consolidated Certificate of Corridor Compatibility and Route Permit for Phase I of Basin Electric’s North Killdeer Loop Transmission Project. The approval will allow the cooperative to construct 28 miles of 345-kV transmission line and two 345/155-kV load-serving substations in McKenzie County in western North Dakota. The project will help meet the need for additional electric transmission capacity in the Williston Basin and surrounding area, and to meet reliability and system stability requirements for the region.

Said the April 29 commission approval about the $161.2-milion Pioneer Phase III project: “Phase Ill is an addition of 111 MW electric generation capacity to the PGS consisting of twelve 9.22 MW natural gas reciprocating internal combustion engines. The PGS is located approximately fifteen miles northwest of Williston, North Dakota. Phase I of the PGS consists of one 45 MW natural gas combustion turbine that began commercial operation in September, 2013. Phase II of the PGS consists of two 45 MW natural gas combustion turbines, one of which began commercial operation in February of 2014 and the other in March of 2014. The Commission’s March 27, 2013 order in Case No. PU-12-509 granted Certificate of Site Compatibility Number 33 designating a 7 acre site for Phase II. The previously designated 7 acre site for Phase II is within the boundaries of the 120 acre site requested for designation in this proceeding.”

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.