BNI Coal, Minnkota extend coal supply agreement

BNI Coal, a subsidiary of ALLETE (NYSE: ALE), has extended its agreement with Minnkota Power Cooperative to supply lignite coal to the North Dakota electric generating cooperative through 2037, extending the current contract by 10 years.

BNI Coal produces nearly 4 million tons of coal annually through its facility at Center, N.D. Most of BNI’s production is utilized by the Milton R. Young Station, the primary source of power generation for Minnkota.

“This contract extension supports Minnkota’s ability to deliver the affordable and reliable energy generated by the Young Station to our members in North Dakota and Minnesota,” said Robert McLennan, president and CEO for Minnkota.

“Coal plays a significant and essential role in a balanced energy-independent future for our nation. The lignite industry is committed to providing low-cost reliable energy to consumers while continuously reducing our environmental impact,” Wade Boeshans, president and general manager of BNI Coal, said. “We’re in it for the long term.”

ALLETE president, chairman and CEO Al Hodnik; Robert McLennan, Minnkota president and CEO; and Wade Boeshans, president and general manager of BNI Coal, finalized the agreement April 22 at BNI headquarters in Bismarck, N.D.

BNI and Minnkota signed the original agreement to supply coal to the Young station in 1974. The 10-year extension also includes the option to extend the agreement an additional five years through 2042.