Heskett Station

From Global Energy Monitor

Heskett Station is an operating power station of at least 88-megawatts (MW) in Mandan, Morton, North Dakota, United States with multiple units, some of which are not currently operating. It is also known as R.M. Heskett Station.


Table 1: Project-level location details

Plant name Location Coordinates (WGS 84)
Heskett Station Mandan, Morton, North Dakota, United States 46.866825, -100.883781 (exact)

The map below shows the exact location of the power station.

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Unit-level coordinates (WGS 84):

  • Unit 1, Unit 2: 46.866825, -100.883781
  • Unit 3, Unit 4: 46.8669, -100.8836

Project Details

Table 2: Unit-level details

Unit name Status Fuel(s) Capacity (MW) Technology CHP Start year Retired year
Unit 1 retired coal - lignite 40 subcritical 1954 2022
Unit 2 retired coal - lignite 75 subcritical 1963 2022
Unit 3 operating[1] fossil gas - natural gas[2] 88[1] gas turbine[2] 2014[2]
Unit 4 construction[1][3] fossil gas - natural gas[2] 88[1] gas turbine[2] 2024[4]

CHP is an abbreviation for Combined Heat and Power. It is a technology that produces electricity and thermal energy at high efficiencies. Coal units track this information in the Captive Use section when known.

Table 3: Unit-level ownership and operator details

Unit name Owner
Unit 1 Montana-Dakota Utilities Co [100.0%]
Unit 2 Montana-Dakota Utilities Co [100.0%]
Unit 3 Montana-Dakota Utilities Co [100.0%]
Unit 4 Montana-Dakota Utilities Co [100.0%]

Plant Retirement

In February 2019, MDU said the coal plant is scheduled for retirement in 2021.[5] As of April 2021, the MDU website listed both units for scheduled closure in March 2022.[6] The plant fired coal for the last time on February 24, 2022.[7]

Gas-Fired Generation

After the closure of the coal plant, Heskett Station continues to send power into the grid via an existing natural gas-fired unit, which was installed in 2014, and another one that is under construction. The unit is expected to become operational in 2023. Both are peaking units.[8]

According to the MDU Resources Group 2023 Annual Report, initial testing of Unit 4 identified certain performance concerns. Modifications were being made and, barring any setbacks. The unitis expected to be fully operational in the second quarter of 2024.[9]

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.[10] 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.[11]

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. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 https://web.archive.org/web/20230918190319/https://www.eia.gov/electricity/data/eia860m/archive/xls/may_generator2023.xlsx. Archived from the original on 18 September 2023. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 https://web.archive.org/web/20200612191408/https://www.eia.gov/electricity/data/eia860m/archive/xls/november_generator2019.xlsx. Archived from the original on 12 June 2020. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  3. https://web.archive.org/web/20220709064257/https://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache%3A7jZDqOg2jQIJ%3Ahttps%3A%2F%2Fdarik.news%2Fnorthdakota%2Fretirement-of-coal-unit-is-end-of-an-era-for-heskett-station-mandan%2F202202495918.html+&cd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us. Archived from the original on 09 July 2022. {{cite web}}: Check date values in: |archive-date= (help); Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. https://web.archive.org/web/20221028021258/https://www.eia.gov/electricity/data/eia860/. Archived from the original on 28 October 2022. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. "MDU plans to retire Mandan coal-fired units in 2021," Bradenton Herald, Feb 19, 2019
  6. "Generation Retirement Plans" Montaka-Dakota.com, accessed April 3, 2021
  7. "Coal unit retirements mark ‘end of an era’ for Heskett Station" The Bismarck Tribune, February 26, 2022
  8. "First stack at Heskett Station comes down; power plant moving from coal to gas". The Bismarck Tribune. December 13, 2022. Retrieved June 22, 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  9. "2023 Annual Report" (PDF). MDU Resources Group. March 29, 2024. Retrieved June 5, 2024.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  10. "The Toll from Coal: An Updated Assessment of Death and Disease from America's Dirtiest Energy Source," Clean Air Task Force, September 2010.
  11. "Technical Support Document for the Powerplant Impact Estimator Software Tool," Prepared for the Clean Air Task Force by Abt Associates, July 2010

Additional data

To access additional data, including interactive maps of the power stations, downloadable datases, and summary data, please visit the Global Coal Plant Tracker and the Global Oil and Gas Plant Tracker on the Global Energy Monitor website.