Wind farm moratorium loses in the Senate

Feb 23, 2017

Sen. Dwight Cook (R-Mandan).
Credit Courtesy ND Legislature

The state Senate has rejected the idea of imposing a two year moratorium on wind development.

Instead, it approved a study of North Dakota’s power generation.

Both were included in a bill before the Senate which had been completely amended by the Senate Finance and Taxation Committee. The Committee chairman – Sen. Dwight Cook (R-Mandan) – told the Senate he pushed for the rewrite because one of the state’s coal-fired power plants is going to shut down, and another has been operating at reduced capacity – because wind generated power gets first priority on the power grid. But Cook had the bill divided – and the moratorium language failed – leaving just the study.

Cook said he believes it is an important study.

"We need a plan," Cook told his Senate colleagues.

The bill passed 42 to 4. It now goes to the House.