Port: Lawmakers prepare to earmark millions for a legal battle with Minnesota over ban on coal-powered energy


MINOT, N.D. — Minnesota’s lawmakers have passed legislation that would ban the import of energy into their state from sources like coal and natural gas plants. Gov. Tim Walz is expected to sign it.

Now North Dakota’s lawmakers are preparing for a legal battle over it, and it wasn’t hard to see coming.

Last month state officials on North Dakota’s Industrial Commission — a regulatory entity made up of Gov. Doug Burgum, Attorney General Drew Wrigley, and Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring — warned of the “certainty” of a lawsuit if Minnesota went ahead with this legislation.

They drafted a letter to their counterparts in Minnesota asking for a compromise.

“Because our electric grid is fully integrated and does not stop at our state boundaries, these two recently introduced bills as written would subsequently hinder North Dakota utilities from effectively implementing carbon capture technologies and would also prohibit utilities from operating dispatchable and accredited resources,” the letter stated.

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