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Electricity

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G&T resources

Visit these pages to learn more about our generation resources:

Check out the Transmission pages to learn about the systems Basin Electric owns and maintains.

It's a simple fact of life: electricity is essential for everyone, everywhere.

Today, Basin Electric is known as one of the most progressive electric cooperatives in America. Whether its renewable energy, fuel diversity, or clean coal, Basin Electric is leading the way for generation and transmission cooperatives and other electric utilities nationwide.

Basin Electric is working with our member systems to ensure that electricity for rural America remains reliable and affordable. In response to significant member load growth, we are building new baseload and peaking units and exploring the viability of renewable energy technologies for generating bulk wholesale power.

The future of energy: fuel diversity

Almost 50 years ago, Basin Electric began serving rural America through development of hydroelectric and lignite coal-based resources. Today, Basin Electric is building on that strong legacy by diversifying our energy portfolio to include wind, natural gas and zero-emissions waste heat. These green projects represent a capital investment of more than $1 billion in renewable resources. By 2012, Basin Electric will have wind and green generation throughout North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Montana and Iowa with an installed capacity of more than 780 MW - enough energy to power more than 262,500 homes on an annual average basis.

We believe that innovation will bring new technologies into the U.S. generation mix. Tremendous advancements are being made in using fuel alternatives to coal to generate electricity. Other fuels and renewable resources such as wind, gas, biofuels, and waste heat are a part of Basin Electric's total generation, and we are selling the green tags from our green and renewable resources to benefit the economics of those resources.

Basin Electric is an international leader in efforts to generate cleaner energy from coal and gas while capturing and sequestering resulting carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Our subsidiary, Dakota Gasification Company,operates one of three facilities world-wide that capture, compress, and sequester some of its CO2 emissions.

Whether we're running on coal, wind, natural gas, hydro, nuclear or oil, or ramping up our generation to fulfill peak demand, you can be sure that we've got the power for our consumers.

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Generation portfolio

View Basin Electric's generation portfolio on the At a Glance page.

Giant power

During the 1950s, a former Federal Power Commission chairman, Leland Olds, advocated the practicality of developing "giant power" on the Great Plains of the Upper Midwest. He suggested integrating federal transmission with new power plants fueled by low-sulfur coal, and then pooling the cooperatives' federal hydropower allocations to meet power demand in the region. Spurred by his plan, Basin Electric constructed its first power plant, a single, 216-megawatt unit: Leland Olds Station, Unit 1 near Stanton, ND.

From that small plant, Basin Electric has evolved into a regional network of electric generating and transmission facilities that bring power to our member cooperatives in nine states.

Learn more

How electricity is made (PDF)

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