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Renewable Groups Predictably Scrutinize Great River Energy’s Continued Use of Coal

Groups who oppose the reliable and affordable electricity generated by coal and natural gas such as the Sierra Club and Fresh Energy are predictably scrutinizing Great River Energy (GRE) for their plans to keep generating electricity at the Coal Creek Power Station, an enormous 1,156 MW power plant located in North Dakota. These special interest groups are hoping to pressure the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission into rejecting GRE's long term resource plan, which depends heavily on the Coal Creek plant to meet the electricity demands of their customers. This shouldn't surprise anyone, because the Sierra Club has spearheaded a nationwide campaign...

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St. Paul Residents Resist Mandated Garbage Collection

The more St. Paul residents find out about the city's newly mandated organized garbage collection program, the less they like about it. City Hall not only took away their citizens' right to choose a hauler, but forced all property owners to sign up for the service, whether they needed it or not. But there's a mounting rebellion underway in response to the city's heavy-handed tactics, according to the Star Tribune. Last week, opponents delivered petitions with more than 6,000 signatures demanding a public vote they hope will end the garbage service forever. The main objection is the $20 to $34 monthly cost, and no...

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MPUC Bows to Activists in Delaying Vote on Natural Gas Plant

State regulators have once again empowered environmental hardliners by postponing a decision on a natural-gas power plant proposed by Minnesota Power. While the plant will be built in Superior, the utility still needs the approval of the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission. Yet instead of voting on the $700 million plant on Thursday, the MPUC put off a final decision at the request of a far-leftist group, according to the Duluth News Tribune. Although the PUC was expected to make a decision Thursday, a last-minute filing by the Minnesota Environmental Quality Board on Tuesday asked the PUC to consider an additional environmental review...

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Don’t Forget, Trump’s Tax Cuts Brought Down Your Electricity Bill

Despite what its detractors say, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed last year has been an unqualified success. Unemployment is at its lowest rate since 1969, wages are rising in critical industries like manufacturing, and we now have a situation where employers are struggling to find employees, not unemployed people struggling to find jobs. Economic gains were part of the sales pitch for the tax cuts, but Minnesotans have also experienced a host of unexpected benefits from them, including refunds from electric utilities. Because the tax cuts reduced the corporate tax income tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, Xcel...

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Will Global Warming Destroy Us All? Probably Not

We often hear that global warming will eventually be the end to all of us. The message is pervasive, and it has been trumpeted again by a newly-released report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the IPCC. While renewable energy advocates, anti-pipeline activists, and others attempt to use global warming as a "trump card," when lobbying for government policies and mandates for their preferred sources of energy, its important to look at whether these claims are supported by the scientific evidence, especially as President Trump has removed the United States from the Paris Climate Accord (not a treaty), and rescinded...

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MN Judge Does A Disservice To All Minnesotans By Letting Pipeline Protesters Off the Hook

On October 11, 2016, three pipeline protesters from Seattle, Annette Klapstein, Emily Johnston, and Ben Joldersma, disguised as safety workers scaled a chain-link fence and used bolt cutters to unlock the shut-off valves on the Enbridge lines 4 and 67, which carry millions of gallons of oil daily across Minnesota from western Canada. The anti-pipeline activists faced felony charges that could result in up to 10 years in prison, that is, until Judge Robert Tiffany  granted the protesters' motion to dismiss the case. The ruling comes as a shock, even to the protesters themselves. However, by dismissing this case, Judge Tiffany did a vast...

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California Electricity Shutoffs Increase Up 64 Over Five Years- Minnesotans Should Take Note

Hundreds of thousands of Californians are feeling the negative effects of their renewable energy mandates, which was recently increased to a 100 percent mandate for zero emission electricity by 2045, as the number of people who can't afford their electric bill has skyrocketed.  Why would Minnesota adopt another failed Californian policy? ...

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Is Minneapolis Park Board’s Toxic Image Hurting Superintendent Search?

It's taking longer than expected for Minneapolis to fill what used to be one of the most highly sought after jobs in the field--superintendent of the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board. But board members have decided to go full speed ahead on another pressing issue before them. The new commissioners who took over the board last year on a platform for change have made it a priority to give themselves a pay raise--possibly more than double their predecessors' compensation of $12,400 and benefits in what's traditionally been viewed as a public service job. An independent "blue ribbon advisory panel" announced by MPRB...

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Xcel Should Save Sherco 1 and 2, Skip the Wind

On October 2nd, Xcel Energy told a crowd of people about how they intend to grow their "carbon free" electricity generation portfolio by replacing coal-fired generation with more wind. This would happen as the monopoly utility closes three coal plants at Sherburne County (Sherco) Units 1 and 2, in Becker, and the Allen S. King plant in Stillwater.  Xcel should save the coal and skip the wind, because Minnesota can't afford more failed energy policies. ...

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