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Otter Tail Power Company Plans Gas-Fired Electricity-Generating Plant In Deuel County, South Dakota

Top officials from Otter Tail Power Company, headquartered in Fergus Falls, Minnesota, plans to seek regulatory approvals to build a new gas-fired electricity-generating station in Deuel County, South Dakota.

The proposed Astoria Station is part of the company’s plan to meet customer demand for electricity, replace expiring capacity purchase agreements and prepare for the company’s 2021 retirement of the 1950s-era coal-fired Hoot Lake Plant in Fergus Falls.

“Otter Tail Power Company’s project is a good fit for South Dakota’s growing energy sector. Natural gas is an efficient, reliable and cost-effective fuel choice for new electricity generation,” said Governor Dennis Daugaard. “Otter Tail Power Company also prioritizes giving back to the communities it serves, investing in initiatives like workforce, education, and health and human services.”

In addition to constructing the approximately 250-megawatt simple-cycle natural gas plant, the project would require a $2 million natural gas pipeline tap, which could lead to regional economic development by facilitating industrial or residential use of natural gas in the area.

Since 2013 Otter Tail Power Company alone has invested approximately $450 million in South Dakota, primarily at its air-quality control system at Big Stone Plant near Milbank and on electric transmission facilities in eastern South Dakota. When Astoria Station is complete in 2021, the company will have invested more than $600 million in South Dakota in less than a decade.

According to Otter Tail Power Company President, Tim Rogelstad, South Dakota is ready, willing, and able to diversify the state’s economy. “When Governor Daugaard took office in 2011, he made economic development a cornerstone of his administration,” said Rogelstad. “He demonstrates commitment to in-state businesses, prospective companies and job growth. We appreciate that South Dakota wants to be a partner to business, with its reasonable regulatory environment and streamlined processes. We share with South Dakota a collaborative spirit dedicated to a balance of economic, community and environmental responsibility. We thank Governor Daugaard and South Dakota for their welcoming nature and look forward to what this potential project may bring to the state and the region.”

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