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Lignite Energy Council holding its annual educational seminar for teachers

About 60 elementary and secondary teachers are attending an educational seminar conducted by the Lignite Energy Council.

The seminar began at Bismarck State College Monday.

"It continues to be a very strong industry, said Council Vice President of Marketing and Communications Kay LaCoe. "The teachers are going to hear that we are still a very crucial part of the baseload power source that the entire US requires."

LaCoe said another message to the teachers concerns the availability of jobs in the industry.

"And we need them to encourage their students to pursue those jobs," LaCoe said.

The teachers will be touring BNI’s Center Mine, and the Milton R. Young station near Center. That power plant is the site of Project Tundra, a big carbon dioxide capture and storage project.

"The only way this industry is going to continue to hold its prowess is through research and development and innovation," LaCoe said. "Project Tundra is the quintessential example of how the industry is going to continue being the baseload source that it is."

Lois Weston teaches in Gallion, Ohio. She said she came to learn about coal, since nearby West Virginia is a coal-producing state.

"I do know it (coal) gets a bad rap from a lot of politicians," Weston said. "I know the reasons for that. But I do think it's a good source of energy for us to use."

The council says since 1986, more than 4000 teachers have attended the seminar.