Montana Public Radio

Colstrip Power Plant

Duane Ankney, the Republican Senator from Colstrip
Mike Albans

Last July, the operators of the Colstrip coal-fired power plant settled a lawsuit with environmental groups, agreeing to shut down the plants two older electricity generators by 2022.

As the community of Colstrip tries to figure out an uncertain future, their Republican Senator Duane Ankney is proposing legislation aiming to provide some security for his town.

Sen. Duane Ankney (R) - Colstrip.
Mike Albans / Montana Public Radio

The state senator from Colstrip is asking lawmakers in Helena to consider a bill requiring a more detailed cleanup plan for when two coal-fired electric generators in his town shut down.

On Monday, Republican Duane Ankney proposed the first of several bills he is bringing forward this legislative session directed at the future of Colstrip

The "Capitol Talk" panel recaps the State of the State, talks about the state of the budget, and notices that both Amanda Curtis and Greg Gianforte are trying to tie their congressional campaigns to Donald Trump. Can the enthusiasm on display at the women's march be translated into real action for change? Sally Mauk and Rob Saldin discuss the week in Montana politics on this episode of "Capitol Talk."

Colstrip power plant, Montana
Courtesy Montana AFI-CIO

Parts of the coal-fired power plant in Colstrip will shut down by 2022. But there’s a chance that the plant’s operators could pull out even sooner, creating an unforeseeable future for the community the power plant employs. Lawmakers in Helena say they have a plan that will help Colstrip stay open for as long as possible.

The priorities Governor Steve Bullock promoted last night during his 3rd State of the State Address were familiar themes from past speeches and from last fall’s re-campaign.

“Fiscal responsibility. Education. Infrastructure. Job Creation. Caring for others,” Bullock summarized.


Gov. Bullock entering the House chambers before his State of the State speech Tuesday, January 24, 2017 in Helena.
Freddy Monares - UM Legislative News Service

Gov. Steve Bullock outlined his goals for the 2017 Legislature Tuesday during his third State of the State address, including a responsible state budget, infrastructure, business growth and education.

Colstrip Closure, Water Rights On The Agenda At The Montana Legislature

Jan 3, 2017
Montana Capitol, Helena, MT.
William Marcus / Montana Public Radio

The Colstrip Power Plant and water rights are shaping up to be big natural resource issues for the 2017 Legislative session.

Groups To Rally For Alternative Energy In Butte

Oct 7, 2016
Solar panels. Stock photo.
(PD)

On Monday, environmental advocates will protest in front of NorthWestern Energy’s Montana headquarters in Butte. The group 350 Missoula and others say NorthWestern isn’t moving quickly enough towards renewable sources of electricity. The rally is scheduled to start at 11:00 a.m. Monday at Emma Park in Butte, followed by speakers from the Montana Environmental Information Center and other groups in front of NorthWestern Energy’s headquarters.

Coal. File photo.
Flickr user oatsy40 (CC-BY-2)

U.S. Department of Energy officials held a briefing with the governor today on options for carbon capture in ensuring the future of Colstrip’s coal-fired plant.

Colstrip Seeks To Limit Water Use To Help Coal Plant

Aug 23, 2016
Power plant at Colstrip, MT.
Beth Saboe / MontanaPBS

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Residents of an eastern Montana city are being asked to limit their water use so one of the largest coal-fired power plants in the western U.S. can continue to safely operate.

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