Heskett Station

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R.M. Heskett Station is a 115.0-megawatt (MW) lignite coal-fired power station owned and operated by MDU Resources Group near Mandan, North Dakota.


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Plant Data

  • Owner: MDU Resources Group[1]
  • Parent Company: MDU Resources Group
  • Plant Nameplate Capacity: 115.0 MW (Megawatts)
  • Units and In-Service Dates: Unit 1: 40.0 MW (1954), Unit 2: 75.0 MW (1963)
  • Location: 400 North 4th St., Mandan, ND 58554
  • GPS Coordinates: 46.866894, -100.883989
  • Technology: Subcritical Stoker (Unit 1), Subcritical Fluidized Bed Technology (Unit 2)
  • Coal type: Lignite
  • Coal Consumption:
  • Coal Source: Beulah Mine (Westmoreland Coal)[2]
  • Number of Employees:
  • Unit Retirements: Both units retired in February 2022.[3]

Plant Retirement

In February 2019, MDU said the coal plant is scheduled for retirement in 2021.[4]

As of April 2021, the MDU website listed both units for scheduled closure in March 2022.[5]

The plant fired coal for the last time on February 24, 2022.[3]

Emissions Data

  • 2006 CO2 Emissions: 682,083 tons
  • 2006 SO2 Emissions:
  • 2006 SO2 Emissions per MWh:
  • 2006 NOx Emissions:
  • 2005 Mercury Emissions:

Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from Heskett Station

In 2010, Abt Associates issued a study commissioned by the Clean Air Task Force, a nonprofit research and advocacy organization, quantifying the deaths and other health effects attributable to fine particle pollution from coal-fired power plants.[6] The study found that over 13,000 deaths and tens of thousands of cases of chronic bronchitis, acute bronchitis, asthma-related episodes and asthma-related emergency room visits, congestive heart failure, acute myocardial infarction, dysrhythmia, ischemic heart disease, chronic lung disease, peneumonia each year are attributable to fine particle pollution from U.S. coal-fired power plants. Fine particle pollution is formed from a combination of soot, acid droplets, and metals formed from sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, and soot. Among those particles, the most dangerous are the smallest (smaller than 2.5 microns), which are so tiny that they can evade the lung's natural defenses, enter the bloodstream, and be transported to vital organs. Impacts are especially severe among the elderly, children, and those with respiratory disease. Low-income and minority populations are disproportionately impacted as well, due to the tendency of companies to avoid locating power plants upwind of affluent communities. The table below estimates the death and illness attributable to the Heskett Station. Abt assigned a value of $7,300,000 to each 2010 mortality, based on a range of government and private studies. Valuations of illnesses ranged from $52 for an asthma episode to $440,000 for a case of chronic bronchitis.[7]

Table 1: Death and disease attributable to fine particle pollution from the Widows Creek Fossil Plant

Type of Impact Annual Incidence Valuation
Deaths 8 $59,000,000
Heart attacks 140 $1,400,000
Asthma attacks 140 $7,000
Hospital admissions 6 $140,000
Chronic bronchitis 5 $2,200,000
Asthma ER visits 8 $3,000

Source: "Find Your Risk from Power Plant Pollution," Clean Air Task Force interactive table, accessed February 2011

Articles and Resources


  1. "Electric Generation" Montana-dakota.com, accessed June 17, 2020.
  2. "EIA 923 March 2020" EIA 923 2020.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Coal unit retirements mark ‘end of an era’ for Heskett Station" The Bismarck Tribune, February 26, 2022
  4. "MDU plans to retire Mandan coal-fired units in 2021," Bradenton Herald, Feb 19, 2019
  5. "Generation Retirement Plans" Montaka-Dakota.com, accessed April 3, 2021
  6. "The Toll from Coal: An Updated Assessment of Death and Disease from America's Dirtiest Energy Source," Clean Air Task Force, September 2010.
  7. "Technical Support Document for the Powerplant Impact Estimator Software Tool," Prepared for the Clean Air Task Force by Abt Associates, July 2010

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