Hoeven Presses FERC Nominees to Support Access to Baseload Power Sources

Senator Outlines North Dakota Leadership in Coal-Based CCUS, Efforts to Push Back on Burdensome Regulations & Streamline Federal Permitting

WASHINGTON – At a recent hearing of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, Senator John Hoeven pressed nominees for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to ensure the stability and affordability of the grid by supporting access to baseload power sources, like coal-fired electric. To this end, the senator outlined the following priorities to the FERC nominees, including David Rosner, Lindsay See and Judy Chang:

  • North Dakota’s leadership in advancing the future of the coal industry through carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) technologies. Hoeven highlighted efforts such as:
    • Project Tundra, a major CCUS retrofit project at the Milton R. Young Station, a traditional 700-megawatt coal-fired power plant that provides baseload electricity in North Dakota and Minnesota.
    • The Dakota Gasification Company, which is developing the largest coal-based CCUS project in the world, utilizing both enhanced oil recovery and geologic storage.
  • Efforts to push back on burdensome regulations that undermine baseload power generation and negatively-impact electric markets.
    • Hoeven plans to lead a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution of disapproval to block the Obama-era Mercury and Air Toxic Standards (MATS) rule, which targets coal-fired electric power plants.
    • Hoeven is also working to prevent the implementation of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Power Plan 2.0, sector-wide regulations that would force states to change their fuel sources for electricity generation.
  • The need to streamline the federal permitting process.


“North Dakota led the way in reducing SOx, NOx and mercury emissions, and now we’re doing the same for carbon emissions with efforts at the Milton R. Young Station through Project Tundra and the Dakota Gasification Company,” said Hoeven. “This is about securing the future of coal-fired electric and supporting the reliability and affordability of the grid. This priority falls squarely within FERC’s authority, and if confirmed, I appreciate the nominees’ commitment to work with me to ensure the energy security of our nation.”

Advancing Coal-Based CCUS

Hoeven has worked for 15 years to establish North Dakota’s leadership in CCUS to help ensure the future of the state’s coal industry and promote the affordability and reliability of the grid. His efforts include securing nearly $400 million in federal funding for the project to date, as well as loan guarantees and the 45Q tax credit to help make coal-fired CCUS projects commercially-viable.

Earlier this year, Minnkota announced that Project Tundra entered its final stage of development as new affiliates, including TC Energy, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Kiewit, were added to build the project. The new partnership is supported by a $350 million grant that Hoeven worked to secure under the Department of Energy’s Carbon Capture Demonstration Projects Program.

Streamlining Federal Permitting

Hoeven is sponsoring the following legislation in the U.S. Senate to provide needed regulatory relief and spur greater U.S. domestic energy production. The senator’s bills, which have been included in comprehensive permitting reform legislation passed by the U.S. House of Representatives, include:

  • The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Mineral Spacing Act, which would remove duplicative BLM permitting regulations and better respect the rights of private mineral holders. 
  • The North American Energy Act, a bill to prevent unnecessary delays for important cross-border energy projects, such as pipelines and transmission lines.
  • Legislation to streamline and set deadlines for multi-agency National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) reviews of natural gas projects needed to get energy to market.