Hoeven seeks support for energy projectsGov. John Hoeven was in Washington, D.C. Wednesday urging the U.S. Department of Energy to support North Dakota renewable and traditional energy projects, including support for Great River Energy’s proposed expansion at Spiritwood Station near Jamestown.
Gov. John Hoeven was in Washington, D.C. Wednesday urging the U.S. Department of Energy to support North Dakota renewable and traditional energy projects, including support for Great River Energy’s proposed expansion at Spiritwood Station near Jamestown.
“The State of North Dakota is already investing in these projects, and today we’re in Washington to seek Department of Energy participation and support for them, as well,” Hoeven said. “Consistent with our Empower North Dakota strategy, the projects we brought to Washington strive to advance all of our energy sectors together, creating good jobs in our state and more energy for our nation.”
Hoeven met with DOE Deputy Secretary Daniel Poneman to seek federal support and participation for an advanced steam distribution system to help expand the Spiritwood Energy Park. The GRE team of partners would provide a 90 percent cost share for the $377 million project, and is seeking $35.2 million from the DOE in matching funds.
The enlarged Spiritwood complex would consist of Spiritwood Station, GRE’s 99 megawatt combined heat and power plant, and three major production facilities: a large barley malting facility, which is already in place, as well as a biomass refinery and a biodiesel production facility, both of which are planned to be added to the complex. Program partners include GRE; Cargill Malt; the Jamestown Stutsman Development Corporation, which is working to develop a biodiesel facility at the site; and Otoka Energy Corp. and Inbicon A/S, who are working together to build a biomass refinery.
Hoeven also met with DOE Undersecretary Christina Johnson to encourage approval of two important components in the state’s $25 million State Energy Program plan: $1 million in federal funding for a biofuels blender pump incentive program at retail fuel outlets to match $1 million in state funding; and $2 million in funding for a flared gas capture demonstration program.
Under the Blender Pump program, matching incentive grants of up to $20,000 will be made to eligible motor fuel retail locations for the purpose of purchasing ethanol or biodiesel blender pumps. To qualify for a grant a retailer must purchase an ethanol blender pump and an associated storage and piping system. Blender pumps enable retailers to offer both biofuels and standard fuel at the same pump. The pumps will provide more choice for consumers at the pump, expand markets for farmers and promote the use of alternative, domestic fuel sources.
The Natural Gas Flare Capture demonstration matching grant program will help producers capture natural gas that would otherwise be burned off and wasted as a byproduct of oil production. The program will assist them in the purchase and installation of micro gas turbine electrical generators, which recycle oil well flare gas to generate electricity to be sold to local rural electric cooperatives.
Capturing and using the gas will not only produce electricity, but also reduce atmospheric emissions because modern, natural gas-fueled generators burn cleanly and reduce emissions over traditional flaring. The electricity will be sold to the local rural electric cooperatives in western North Dakota.