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Statement from Governor Mark Dayton

April 18, 2014
ST. PAUL, MN – Governor Mark Dayton released the following statement today regarding a federal judge’s decision to strike down part of Minnesota’s Next Generation Energy Act.

“I strongly disagree with the federal court’s decision to strike down an essential part of Minnesota’s Next Generation Energy Act. My administration will appeal this decision and oppose North Dakota’s intentions with every means at our disposal.

“I will defend the State of Minnesota’s right to protect the quality of the air our citizens breathe.  The State Statute does not prevent anyone from building and operating a new power-generating facility, whose toxic emissions will affect Minnesota’s air quality. It only requires that those new emissions must be offset by the same or greater reduction in emissions from other plants. In other words, Minnesota’s law encourages the replacement of older, more-polluting power plants with more efficient, cleaner facilities.

“In this case, North Dakota operators propose to build new, coal-fired power-generating plants without offsetting emission reductions. Prevailing winds will carry those toxic emissions directly into Minnesota. That shameful practice should not be permitted by either the state or federal government.”