Coal Power Plant
A piece of St. Paul history came down Sunday morning in dramatic fashion. Demolition crews brought down a towering smokestack as part of the ongoing demolition of the Island Station Power plant. After standing over the Mississippi riverfront for more than 90 years, the 280-foot smokestack crumbled in a matter of seconds.
Xcel Energy says it plans to keep burning coal in the two oldest units at its Sherburne County power plant in Becker in central Minnesota. In a report to regulators, Xcel says sticking with coal is the smartest course, rather than switching to natural gas, at least until the future of environmental regulations becomes clearer.
The Sherco 3 power plant near Becker remains out of service after a weekend fire. A spokesman for Xcel Energy says the coal-fired plant had been down since mid-September for routine maintenance.