Minnesota Energy Connection

Proposal will deliver new renewable energy to customers to replace retiring coal plants.

Current Status:

Xcel Energy thanks all landowners, local officials, and other key stakeholders who submitted comments to the State of Minnesota as part of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) scoping process. The comments and route alternatives submitted to the Public Utilities Commission and Department of Commerce will help the state determine if the project’s Certificate of Need should be approved and, if so, the most appropriate route for the new transmission line to follow.

While the comment period for the EIS scope is closed, comments on the overall project can be submitted to the Commission at any time. Click here for Commission contact information and please reference docket numbers 22-131 (Certificate of Need) and 22-132 (Route Permit) to ensure your comments are included in the correct docket.

Next steps:
Staff from the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission and Department of Commerce will review all comments submitted during the scoping process and develop the information to be analyzed in the Environmental Impact Statement. Following the publication of the scope of information, staff will begin developing the EIS, a process expected to take several months. When the draft EIS is available, the state will post it to the edockets website and Xcel Energy will include a link on our website.

Additional route options for the project will likely be included in the EIS scope, and we will work with State of Minnesota staff to inform newly affected landowners.

An Administrative Law Judge assigned to the case will set the upcoming schedule, which will include public hearings throughout the project area, as well as evidentiary and other hearings. Notices for public meetings will be mailed to affected landowners and advertised in local newspapers.

Regulatory review process:
The Commission is responsible for reviewing applications for new high-voltage transmission lines. Xcel Energy has applied for a Certificate of Need and a Route Permit, both of which are currently under consideration. Both applications must be approved before Xcel Energy could begin construction on the project.

We encourage you to sign up to receive email updates from the Commission when new items are filed in the docket. To receive email notifications when new documents are filed in the Route Permit docket, visit: https://www.edockets.state.mn.us/EFiling, select Subscribe to dDockets and follow the prompts.
The docket number for the Certificate of Need is 22-131 and the docket number for the Route Permit application is 22-132 (22 stands for the year 2022, the year when information was first filed in this proceeding).

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