Minnesota Office of the Revisor of Statutes
[*Add Subtitle/link: Office]

Menu

Revisor of Statutes Menu

Minnesota Session Laws

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

                            CHAPTER 641-S.F.No. 1706 
                  An act relating to public utilities; providing 
                  legislative authorization of the construction of a 
                  facility for the temporary dry cask storage of spent 
                  nuclear fuel at Prairie Island nuclear generating 
                  plant; providing conditions for any future expansion 
                  of storage capacity; approving the continued operation 
                  of pool storage at Monticello and Prairie Island 
                  nuclear generating plants; requiring development of 
                  wind power; regulating nuclear power plants; requiring 
                  increased conservation investments; providing 
                  low-income discounted electric rates; regulating 
                  certain advertising expenses related to nuclear power; 
                  creating a legislative electric energy task force; 
                  appropriating money; amending Minnesota Statutes 1992, 
                  sections 216A.03, by adding a subdivision; 216B.16, 
                  subdivision 8, and by adding a subdivision; 216B.241, 
                  subdivision 1a, and by adding a subdivision; and 
                  216B.243, by adding a subdivision; proposing coding 
                  for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapters 116C; 
                  216B; and 216C. 
        BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
                                   ARTICLE 1
              RADIOACTIVE WASTE MANAGEMENT FACILITY AUTHORIZATION
           Section 1.  [116C.77] [LEGISLATIVE AUTHORIZATION FOR 
        INDEPENDENT SPENT FUEL STORAGE INSTALLATION AT PRAIRIE ISLAND.] 
           The legislature recognizes that: 
           (1) the Minnesota environmental quality board on May 16, 
        1991, reviewed and found adequate a final environmental impact 
        statement ("EIS") on the proposal to construct and operate a dry 
        cask storage facility for the temporary storage of spent nuclear 
        fuel from the Prairie Island nuclear generating plant; 
           (2) the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission 
        reviewed and approved a safety analysis report on the facility 
        and on October 19, 1993, granted a license for the facility; and 
           (3) the public utilities commission in docket no. 
        E002/CN-91-91 reviewed the facility and approved a limited 
        certificate of need approving the use of casks. 
           The Minnesota legislature in compliance with Minnesota 
        Statutes, section 116C.72, hereby ratifies and approves the EIS 
        and the limited certificate of need and authorizes the use of 
        casks at Prairie Island in accordance with the terms and 
        conditions of the certificate of need as modified by this act 
        and without further environmental review under chapter 116D or 
        further administrative review under section 216B.243.  
           Sec. 2.  [116C.771] [ADDITIONAL CASK LIMITATIONS.] 
           (a) Five casks may be filled and used at Prairie Island 
        immediately upon the effective date of this article. 
           (b) An additional four casks may be filled and used at 
        Prairie Island if the environmental quality board determines 
        that, by December 31, 1996, the public utility operating the 
        Prairie Island plant has filed a license application with the 
        United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission for a spent nuclear 
        fuel storage facility off of Prairie Island in Goodhue county, 
        is continuing to make a good faith effort to implement the site, 
        and has constructed, contracted for construction and operation, 
        or purchased installed capacity of 100 megawatts of windpower in 
        addition to windpower under construction or contract on the 
        effective date of this section. 
           (c)(1) An additional eight casks may be filled and placed 
        at Prairie Island if the legislature has not revoked the 
        authorization under clause (2) or the public utility has 
        satisfied the wind power and biomass mandate requirements in 
        article 3, section 2, subdivision 1, clause (1), and article 3, 
        section 3, clause (1), and the alternative site in Goodhue 
        county is operational or under construction.  (2) If the site is 
        not under construction or operational or the wind mandates are 
        not satisfied, the legislature may revoke the authorization for 
        the additional eight casks by a law enacted prior to June 1, 
        1999. 
           (d) Except as provided under paragraph (e), dry cask 
        storage capacity for high-level nuclear waste within the state 
        may not be increased beyond the casks authorized by section 1 or 
        their equivalent storage capacity. 
           (e) This section does not prohibit a public utility from 
        applying for or the public utilities commission from granting a 
        certificate of need for dry cask storage to accommodate the 
        decommissioning of a nuclear power plant within this state. 
           Sec. 3.  [116C.772] [PUBLIC UTILITY RESPONSIBILITIES.] 
           Subdivision 1.  [DEFINITION.] For the purpose of this 
        section, "public utility" means the public utility operating the 
        Prairie Island nuclear generating plant. 
           Subd. 2.  [DRY CASK ALTERNATIVES STUDY.] The public utility 
        must submit to the legislative electric energy task force a 
        reevaluation of all alternatives and combinations of those 
        alternatives to dry cask storage. 
           Subd. 3.  [WORKER TRANSITION PLAN.] The public utility must 
        submit to the department of jobs and training a worker 
        transition plan if there is a shutdown of the Prairie Island 
        nuclear generating plant for longer than six months. 
           Subd. 4.  [NUCLEAR POWER-PHASE OUT PLAN.] The public 
        utility must submit to the electric energy task force a detailed 
        plan for the phase-out of all nuclear power generated by the 
        utility. 
           Subd. 5.  [DECOMMISSIONING PLAN.] The public utility must 
        submit to the electric energy task force a decommissioning plan 
        for TN-40 storage casks after the casks are emptied of spent 
        fuel. 
           Sec. 4.  [116C.773] [CONTRACTUAL AGREEMENT.] 
           The authorization for dry casks contained in section 1 is 
        not effective until the governor, on behalf of the state, and 
        the public utility operating the Prairie Island nuclear plant 
        enter into an agreement binding the parties to the terms of 
        sections 2 and 3 and the mandate for 200 megawatts of windpower 
        and 75 megawatts of biomass required by December 31, 2002, in 
        article 3, section 2, subdivision 1, and section 3.  The 
        Mdewakanton Dakota Tribal Council at Prairie Island is an 
        intended third-party beneficiary of this agreement and has 
        standing to enforce the agreement. 
           Sec. 5.  [116C.774] [AUTHORIZATION.] 
           To the extent that the radioactive waste management act, 
        Minnesota Statutes, section 116C.72, requires legislative 
        authorization of the operation of certain facilities, this 
        section expressly authorizes the continued operation of the 
        Monticello nuclear generating plant spent nuclear fuel pool 
        storage facility and the Prairie Island nuclear generating plant 
        spent nuclear fuel pool storage facility. 
           Sec. 6.  [116C.775] [SHIPMENT PRIORITIES; PRAIRIE ISLAND.] 
           If a storage or disposal site becomes available outside of 
        the state to accept high-level nuclear waste stored at Prairie 
        Island, the waste contained in dry casks shall be shipped to 
        that site before the shipment of any waste from the spent 
        nuclear fuel storage pool.  Once waste is shipped that was 
        contained in a cask, the cask must be decommissioned and not 
        used for further storage. 
           Sec. 7.  [116C.776] [ALTERNATIVE CASK TECHNOLOGY FOR SPENT 
        FUEL STORAGE.] 
           If the public utilities commission determines that casks or 
        other containers that allow for transportation as well as 
        storage of spent nuclear fuel exist and are economically 
        feasible for storage and transportation of spent nuclear fuel 
        generated by the Prairie Island nuclear power generating plan, 
        the commission shall order their use to replace use of the casks 
        that are only usable for storage, but not transportation.  If 
        the commission orders use of dual-purpose casks under this 
        section, it must authorize use of a number of dual-purpose casks 
        that provides the same total storage capacity that is authorized 
        under this article; provided, that the total cask storage 
        capacity permitted under this article may not exceed the 
        capacity of the TN-40 casks authorized under section 1. 
           Sec. 8.  [116C.777] [SITE.] 
           The spent fuel contents of dry casks located on Prairie 
        Island must be moved immediately upon the availability of 
        another site for storage of the spent fuel that is not located 
        on Prairie Island. 
           Sec. 9.  [116C.778] [RERACKING.] 
           The spent fuel storage pool at Prairie Island may be 
        reracked a third time.  The reracking does not require 
        legislative authorization but is subject to other applicable 
        state review.  The additional storage capacity added by the 
        third reracking and utilized when added to the total storage 
        capacity of dry cask storage utilitized, cannot exceed the total 
        capacity of 17 TN-40 casks. 
           Sec. 10.  [116C.779] [FUNDING FOR RENEWABLE DEVELOPMENT.] 
           The public utility that operates the Prairie Island nuclear 
        generating plant must transfer to a renewable development 
        account $500,000 each year for each dry cask containing spent 
        fuel that is located at the independent spent fuel storage 
        installation at Prairie Island after January 1, 1999.  The fund 
        transfer must be made if waste is stored in a cask for any part 
        of a year.  Funds in the account can only be expended for 
        development of renewable energy sources.  
           Sec. 11.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
           This article is effective the day following final enactment.
                                   ARTICLE 2
                  ECONOMIC REGULATION OF NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS
           Section 1.  [LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS.] 
           The legislature finds that there is great uncertainty over 
        the means and costs of disposing of radioactive wastes generated 
        at nuclear-powered electric generating plants.  Current and 
        future electric ratepayers are at risk to pay for these 
        uncertain and potentially enormous costs.  These costs could 
        cause economic hardship for the citizens of this state and 
        damage economic growth.  For these reasons the legislature finds 
        it necessary to protect its citizens against these costs.  While 
        these potential costs do not currently warrant closing an 
        operating nuclear power plant, they do warrant a moratorium on 
        new nuclear plant construction and closer monitoring of 
        operating nuclear power plants. 
           Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 216B.243, is 
        amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 3b.  [NUCLEAR POWER PLANT; NEW CONSTRUCTION 
        PROHIBITED.] The commission may not issue a certificate of need 
        for the construction of a new nuclear-powered electric 
        generating plant. 
           Sec. 3.  [216B.244] [NUCLEAR PLANT CAPACITY REQUIREMENTS.] 
           A reactor unit at a nuclear power electric generating plant 
        that has an annual load capacity factor of less than 55 percent 
        for each of three consecutive calendar years must be shut down 
        and cease operating no later than 500 days after the end of the 
        third such consecutive calendar year.  For the purposes of this 
        section, "load capacity factor" means the ratio between a 
        reactor unit's average load and its peak load. 
           Sec. 4.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
           This article is effective the day following final enactment.
                                   ARTICLE 3
                       ENERGY CONSERVATION AND RENEWABLES 
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 216B.241, 
        subdivision 1a, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 1a.  [INVESTMENTS, EXPENDITURES, AND CONTRIBUTIONS; 
        REGULATED UTILITIES.] (a) For purposes of this subdivision and 
        subdivision 2, "public utility" has the meaning given it in 
        section 216B.02, subdivision 4.  Each public utility shall spend 
        and invest for energy conservation improvements under this 
        subdivision and subdivision 2 the following amounts: 
           (1) for a utility that furnishes gas service, .5 percent of 
        its gross operating revenues from service provided in the state; 
        and 
           (2) for a utility that furnishes electric service, 1.5 
        percent of its gross operating revenues from service provided in 
        the state; and 
           (3) for a utility that furnishes electric service and that 
        operates a nuclear powered electric generating plant within the 
        state, two percent of its gross operating revenues from service 
        provided in the state. 
           (b) The commissioner may require investments or spending 
        greater than the amounts required under this subdivision for a 
        public utility whose most recent advance forecast required under 
        section 116C.54 projects a peak demand deficit of 100 megawatts 
        or greater within five years under mid-range forecast 
        assumptions.  A public utility may appeal a decision of the 
        commissioner under this paragraph to the commission under 
        subdivision 2.  In reviewing a decision of the commissioner 
        under this paragraph, the commission shall rescind the decision 
        if it finds that the required investments or spending will: 
           (1) not result in cost-effective programs; or 
           (2) otherwise not be in the public interest. 
           (c) Each utility shall determine what portion of the amount 
        it sets aside for conservation improvement will be used for 
        conservation improvements under subdivision 2 and what portion 
        it will contribute to the energy and conservation account 
        established in subdivision 2a.  Contributions must be remitted 
        to the commissioner of public service by February 1 of each year.
        Nothing in this subdivision prohibits a public utility from 
        spending or investing for energy conservation improvement more 
        than required in this subdivision. 
           Sec. 2.  [216B.2423] [WIND POWER MANDATE.] 
           Subdivision 1.  [MANDATE.] A public utility, as defined in 
        Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.02, subdivision 4, that 
        operates a nuclear-powered electric generating plant within this 
        state must construct and operate, purchase, or contract to 
        construct and operate:  (1) 225 megawatts of electric energy 
        installed capacity generated by wind energy conversion systems 
        within the state by December 31, 1998; and (2) an additional 200 
        megawatts of installed capacity so generated by December 31, 
        2002. 
           For the purpose of this section, "wind energy conversion 
        system" has the meaning given it in section 216C.06, subdivision 
        12. 
           Subd. 2.  [RESOURCE PLANNING MANDATE.] The public utilities 
        commission shall order a public utility subject to subdivision 
        1, to construct and operate, purchase, or contract to purchase 
        an additional 400 megawatts of electric energy installed 
        capacity generated by wind energy conversion systems by December 
        31, 2002, subject to resource planning and least cost planning 
        requirements in Minnesota Statutes, section 216B.2422. 
           Sec. 3.  [216B.2424] [BIOMASS POWER MANDATE.] 
           A public utility, as defined in Minnesota Statutes, section 
        216B.02, subdivision 4, that operates a nuclear powered electric 
        generating plant within this state must, by December 31, 1998, 
        construct and operate, purchase, or contract to construct and 
        operate (1) 50 megawatts of electric energy installed capacity 
        generated by farm grown closed-loop biomass; and (2) an 
        additional 75 megawatts of installed capacity so generated by 
        December 31, 2002. 
           Sec. 4.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
           Section 1 is effective January 1, 1995. 
           Sections 2 and 3 are effective the day following final 
        enactment.  
                                   ARTICLE 4
                                 MISCELLANEOUS
           Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 216A.03, is 
        amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 6.  [RECORD OF PROCEEDINGS.] An audio magnetic 
        recording device shall be used to keep a record of all 
        proceedings before the commission unless the commission provides 
        a hearing reporter to record the proceeding. 
           Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 216B.16, 
        subdivision 8, is amended to read: 
           Subd. 8.  [ADVERTISING EXPENSES.] The commission shall 
        disapprove the portion of any rate which makes an allowance 
        directly or indirectly for expenses incurred by a public utility 
        to provide a public advertisement which: 
           (a) is designed to influence or has the effect of 
        influencing public attitudes towards legislation or proposed 
        legislation, or toward a rule, proposed rule, authorization or 
        proposed authorization of the public utilities commission or 
        other agency of government responsible for regulating a public 
        utility; 
           (b) is designed to justify or otherwise support or defend a 
        rate, proposed rate, practice or proposed practice of a public 
        utility; 
           (c) is designed primarily to promote consumption of the 
        services of the utility; or 
           (d) is designed primarily to promote good will for the 
        public utility or improve the utility's public image; or 
           (e) is designed to promote the use of nuclear power or to 
        promote a nuclear waste storage facility. 
           The commission may approve a rate which makes an allowance 
        for expenses incurred by a public utility to disseminate 
        information which: 
           (a) is designed to encourage conservation of energy 
        supplies; 
           (b) is designed to promote safety; or 
           (c) is designed to inform and educate customers as to 
        financial services made available to them by the public utility. 
           The commission shall not withhold approval of a rate 
        because it makes an allowance for expenses incurred by the 
        utility to disseminate information about corporate affairs to 
        its owners. 
           Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 216B.16, is 
        amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 14.  [LOW-INCOME DISCOUNT ELECTRIC RATES.] A public 
        utility shall provide a 50 percent electric rate discount on the 
        first 300 kilowatt hours consumed in a billing period for a 
        low-income residential customer.  For the purposes of this 
        subdivision, "low-income" means a customer who is receiving 
        assistance from the federal low-income home energy assistance 
        program.  For the purposes of this subdivision, "public utility" 
        includes only those public utilities with more than 200,000 
        residential electric service customers.  The commission may 
        issue orders necessary to implement, administer, and recover the 
        discount rate program on a timely basis.  
           Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 1992, section 216B.241, is 
        amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
           Subd. 1c.  [ENERGY-SAVING GOALS.] The commissioner shall 
        establish energy-savings goals for energy conservation 
        improvement expenditures and shall evaluate an energy 
        conservation improvement program on how well it meets the goals 
        set. 
           Sec. 5.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
           Section 3 is effective January 1, 1995. 
                                   ARTICLE 5
                           ELECTRIC ENERGY TASK FORCE
           Section 1.  [216C.051] [LEGISLATIVE ELECTRIC ENERGY TASK 
        FORCE.] 
           Subdivision 1.  [FINDINGS.] The legislature finds that it 
        needs more information on the future management of high-level 
        radioactive waste, the costs of that management, and the 
        technical and economic feasibility of utilizing alternative 
        energy resources.  Before any legislative determinations may be 
        reasonably made that are more specific than the determinations 
        made in this act, the legislature needs detailed, credible, and 
        reliable information on these issues. 
           Subd. 2.  [ESTABLISHMENT.] (a) There is established a 
        legislative electric energy task force to study future electric 
        energy sources and costs and to make recommendations for 
        legislation for an environmentally and economically sustainable 
        and advantageous electric energy supply. 
           (b) The task force consists of: 
           (1) eight members of the house of representatives including 
        the chairs of the environment and natural resources and 
        regulated industries and energy committees and six members to be 
        appointed by the speaker of the house, two of whom must be from 
        the minority caucus; 
           (2) eight members of the senate including the chairs of the 
        environment and natural resources and jobs, energy, and 
        community development committees and six members to be appointed 
        by the subcommittee on committees, two of whom must be from the 
        minority caucus. 
           (c) The task force may employ staff, contract for 
        consulting services, and may reimburse the expenses of persons 
        requested to assist it in its duties other than state employees 
        or employees of electric utilities.  The director of the 
        legislative coordinating commission shall assist the task force 
        in administrative matters.  The task force shall elect 
        co-chairs, one member of the house and one member of the senate 
        from among the committee chairs named to the committee. 
           Subd. 3.  [FUTURE ENERGY SOLUTIONS; TECHNICAL AND ECONOMIC 
        ANALYSIS.] In light of the electric energy guidelines 
        established in subdivision 7 and in light of existing 
        conservation improvement programs and plans, utility resource 
        plans, and other existing energy plans and analyses, the 
        legislative task force on energy shall undertake an analysis of 
        the technical and economic feasibility of an electric energy 
        future for the state that relies on environmentally and 
        economically sustainable and advantageous electric energy 
        supply.  The task force shall contract with one or more energy 
        policy experts and energy economists to assist it in its 
        analysis.  The task force may not contract for service nor 
        employ any person who was involved in any capacity in any 
        portion of any proceeding before the public utilities 
        commission, the administrative law judge, the state court of 
        appeals, or the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission 
        related to the dry cask storage proposal on Prairie Island.  
           The analysis must address at least the following: 
           (1) to the best of forecasting abilities, how much electric 
        generation capacity and demand for electric energy is necessary 
        to maintain a strong economy and a high quality of life in the 
        state over the next 15 to 20 years; how is this demand level 
        affected by achievement of the maximum reasonably feasible and 
        cost effective demand side management and generation and 
        distribution efficiencies; 
           (2) what alternative forms of energy can provide a stable 
        supply of energy and are producible and sustainable in the state 
        and at what cost; 
           (3) what are the costs to the state and ratepayers to 
        ensure that new electric energy generation utilizes less 
        environmentally damaging sources; how do those costs change as 
        the time frame for development and implementation of new 
        generation sources is compressed; 
           (4) what are the implications for delivery systems for 
        energy produced in areas of the state that do not now have high 
        volume transmission capability; are new transmission 
        technologies being developed that can address some of the 
        concerns with transmission; can a more dispersed electric 
        generation system lessen the need for long distance 
        transmission; 
           (5) what are the actual costs and benefits of purchasing 
        electricity and fuel to generate electricity from outside the 
        state; what are the present costs to the state's economy of 
        exporting a large percentage of the state's energy dollars and 
        what is the future economic impact of continuing to do so; 
           (6) are there benefits to be had from a large immediate 
        investment in quickly implementing alternative electric energy 
        sources in terms of developing an exportable technology and/or 
        commodity; is it feasible to turn around the flow of dollars for 
        energy so that the state imports dollars and exports energy and 
        energy technology; what is a reasonable time frame for the shift 
        if it is possible; 
           (7) are there taxation or regulatory barriers to developing 
        more sustainable and less problematic electric energy 
        generation; what are they specifically and how can they be 
        specifically addressed; 
           (8) can an approach be developed that moves quickly to 
        development and implementation of alternative energy sources 
        that can be forgiving of interim failures but that is also 
        sufficiently deliberate to ensure ultimate success on a large 
        scale; 
           (9) in what specific ways can the state assist regional 
        energy suppliers accelerate phasing out energy production 
        processes that produce wastes or emissions that must necessarily 
        be carefully controlled and monitored to minimize adverse 
        effects on the environment and human health and to assist in 
        developing and implementing base load energy production that 
        both prevents or minimizes by its nature adverse environmental 
        and human health effects and utilizes resources that are 
        available or producible in the state; 
           (10) whether there is a need to establish additional 
        dislocated worker assistance for workers at the Prairie Island 
        nuclear power plant; if so, how that assistance should be 
        structured; 
           (11) can the state monitor, evaluate, and affect federal 
        actions relating to permanent storage of high level radioactive 
        waste; what actions by the state over what period of time would 
        expedite federal action to take responsibility for the waste; 
           (12) should the state establish a legislative oversight 
        commission on energy issues; should the responsibilities of an 
        oversight commission be coordinated with the activities of the 
        public utilities commission and the department of public service 
        and if so, how; and 
           (13) is it feasible to convert existing nuclear power and 
        coal-fired electric generating plants to utilization of energy 
        sources that result in significantly less environmental damage; 
        if so, what are the short-term and long-term costs and benefits 
        of doing so; how do shorter or longer time periods for 
        conversion affect the cost/benefit analysis. 
           Subd. 4.  [RADIOACTIVE WASTE MANAGEMENT; FUTURE AND 
        ECONOMIC ANALYSIS.] The legislative task force shall analyze the 
        future of and the economic effects of the continued generation 
        of electric power and radioactive waste at the Prairie Island 
        nuclear power plant.  The task force shall include in its report 
        under subdivision 5, a specific discussion of: 
           (1) when radioactive waste will be removed from Prairie 
        Island for permanent storage outside of the state, who will bear 
        the costs of the future management of the radioactive waste 
        generated by the Prairie Island nuclear generating plant; when 
        that shift in responsibility is likely to occur; and to what 
        extent utility ratepayers and shareholders and state taxpayers 
        will be shielded from the costs to manage the waste in the 
        future; 
           (2) the probability of an accident and the extent to which 
        persons who may be at risk of personal injury or property damage 
        due to foreseeable or unforeseeable catastrophic events that may 
        allow the release of radioactivity from the nuclear power plant 
        and associated activities could be fully compensated for the 
        injuries or damage and by whom; 
           (3) a range of reasonable estimates of the costs to manage 
        radioactive waste generated by the nuclear power plant under 
        scenarios to be developed by the task force, ranging from 
        monitoring the waste in the storage pool at Prairie Island to 
        removal of waste from the state beginning in 1998 to permanent 
        storage of the waste in the state; to the extent those costs 
        will necessarily fall on present and future utility ratepayers 
        and shareholders and state taxpayers, how to ensure they can be 
        met without catastrophic disruption of the state's economy in 
        the future; and whether funds should be set aside to ensure that 
        present ratepayers pay the future costs of radioactive waste 
        management based on volume of usage of electricity rather than 
        on the rate structure of the utility; 
           (4) whether reprocessing and reuse of spent nuclear fuel 
        generated by the Prairie Island nuclear generating plant is 
        technically and economically feasible; if so, how to encourage 
        development of reprocessing and reuse; 
           (5) whether emerging nuclear technologies, such as integral 
        fast reactors, which can generate electricity without 
        environmental damage while producing no or minimal radioactive 
        waste, are economically feasible and practical electric energy 
        alternatives in the foreseeable future and, if so, how to 
        encourage and take advantage of such technologies; 
           (6) if the waste is likely to be removed from the state, 
        whether technologies are likely to be economically feasible in 
        the relatively near future for minimizing the handling of the 
        waste and minimizing contamination of additional materials that 
        will need special management prior to transport out of the 
        state, including the availability of combination storage and 
        transport containers; 
           (7) if the waste is unlikely to be removed from the state 
        or if waste will need to be indefinitely stored outside the 
        power plants after decommissioning, whether sites for storage of 
        the waste outside the structure of the Prairie Island power 
        plant potentially can be found that minimize economic and social 
        disruption, maximize environmental, health, and safety 
        protection, minimize transportation distance, and place the 
        burden of storage of the waste on those communities that enjoy 
        the immediate economic benefits of the existence and operation 
        of the power plants; if potential sites exist, what process 
        should be used to identify and utilize them if necessary; the 
        entity that is searching for an alternative site within the 
        state for the disposal of spent nuclear fuel from the Prairie 
        Island nuclear generating plant, is seeking permits for the 
        site, or is constructing the site shall report progress on those 
        activities every six months to the task force commencing January 
        1, 1995; 
           (8) factors to be used in siting a high-level radioactive 
        waste management facility to include at least: 
           (i) the proximity of the site to residents and businesses; 
           (ii) the proximity of the site to surface waters; 
           (iii) the vulnerability of the site to tornadoes and other 
        natural phenomena; 
           (iv) the benefits received and the costs incurred by the 
        host and adjacent communities due to operation of the nuclear 
        generating facility that produced the high-level radioactive 
        waste to be managed at the proposed facility; 
           (v) the benefits received and costs incurred by the host 
        and adjacent communities due to operation of the proposed waste 
        management facility; and 
           (vi) the availability of transportation routes between the 
        nuclear generating plant and the proposed waste management 
        facility; and 
           (9) federal law related to the interstate transportation of 
        high-level radioactive waste and how that law may operate in 
        relation to an independent spent fuel storage installation 
        located in the state. 
           Subd. 5.  [REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS.] (a) The legislative 
        task force may contract with independent experts, none of whom 
        can have been involved in any capacity in any of the proceedings 
        before the public utilities commission, the administrative law 
        judge, or the court of appeals related to dry cask storage at 
        Prairie Island or in any proceedings related to the license for 
        the facility granted by the United States Nuclear Regulatory 
        Commission, to assist it with analysis of items and issues 
        listed in subdivisions 3 and 4. 
           (b) The legislative task force shall convene a separate 
        balanced group of experts in the fields of energy production and 
        distribution and energy economics from within and without the 
        state to include experts formerly or currently employed by the 
        department of public service and/or the public utilities 
        commission, an economist employed by the residential and small 
        business division of the office of the attorney general, 
        electric energy experts employed by utilities, experts from 
        other states that have begun to implement policies for utilizing 
        indigenous, sustainable energy sources, experts from public 
        advocacy groups, and others to be determined by the task force.  
        The task force shall request the group of experts to assist it 
        in publicly examining and analyzing information received from 
        the independent experts and in preparing the report required in 
        paragraph (c). 
           (c) By January 15, 1996, the task force shall submit a 
        report to the chairs of the committees in the house and in the 
        senate that have responsibility for energy and for environmental 
        and natural resources issues that contains an overview of plans 
        and analyses that have been prepared, a critique of how those 
        plans and analyses will assist in implementation of the energy 
        conservation and sources for generation policies and goals in 
        Minnesota Statutes, chapters 216B and 216C, and specific 
        recommendations for legislative action that will ensure 
        development and implementation of electric energy policy that 
        will provide the state with adequate, sustainable, and economic 
        electric power for the long term while utilizing, to the maximum 
        reasonable extent, energy resources that are available or 
        producible within the state and while developing, maintaining, 
        and strengthening a viable and robust energy and utility 
        infrastructure. 
           (d) By February 1, 1995, the task force shall submit to the 
        chairs of the committees specified in paragraph (c), a 
        preliminary report that provides: 
           (1) an overview of the current status of energy planning 
        and implementation of those plans by state agencies and 
        utilities, along with an analysis of the extent to which 
        existing statutory energy policies and goals are being met for 
        electric energy consumed in the state; 
           (2) an analysis of and any recommendations for adjustments 
        to the specific targets set in section 1, subdivisions 4 and 5, 
        relating to energy savings, electric generation sources for 
        replacement and additional capacity needs, and development of 
        wind and biomass energy sources; and 
           (3) as much information as the task force has been able to 
        gather on future high-level radioactive waste management and 
        transportation, including technologies and costs. 
           Subd. 6.  [ASSESSMENT; APPROPRIATION.] On request by the 
        co-chairs of the legislative task force and the director of the 
        legislative coordinating commission, the commissioner of the 
        department of public service shall assess from electric 
        utilities, in addition to assessments made under Minnesota 
        Statutes, section 216B.62, the amount requested for the studies 
        and analysis required in subdivisions 3 and 4 and for operation 
        of the task force not to exceed $350,000.  The amount assessed 
        under this section is appropriated to the director of the 
        legislative coordinating commission for those purposes. 
           Subd. 7.  [GUIDELINES; PREFERRED ELECTRIC GENERATION 
        SOURCES; DEFINITIONS.] (a) The legislative task force on 
        electric energy shall undertake its responsibilities in light of 
        the guidelines specified in this subdivision. 
           (b) The highest priority in electric energy production and 
        consumption is conservation of electric energy and management of 
        demand by all segments of the community. 
           (c) The following energy sources for generating electric 
        power distributed in the state, listed in their descending order 
        of preference, based on minimizing long-term negative 
        environmental, social, and economic burdens imposed by the 
        specific energy sources, are: 
           (1) wind and solar; 
           (2) biomass and low-head or refurbished hydropower; 
           (3) decomposition gases produced by solid waste management 
        facilities, natural gas-fired cogeneration, and waste materials 
        or byproducts combined with natural gas; 
           (4) natural gas, hydropower that is not low-head or 
        refurbished hydropower, and solid waste as a direct fuel or 
        refuse-derived fuel; and 
           (5) coal and nuclear power. 
           (d) For the purposes of paragraph (c) within each clause, 
        the more efficient an energy source is in generating electricity 
        or the more efficient a technology is that utilizes an energy 
        source, the more preferred it is for use in generating 
        electricity for distribution and consumption in the state. 
           (e) For the purposes of paragraph (c), clauses (3) and (4), 
        the use of waste materials and byproducts for generating 
        electric power must be limited to those waste materials and 
        byproducts that are necessarily generated or produced by 
        efficient processes and systems.  Preventing and minimizing 
        waste and byproducts are preferred in every situation to relying 
        on the continued generation or production of waste materials and 
        byproducts. 
           (f) For the purposes of this section, "preferred" or 
        "renewable" energy sources are those described in paragraph (c), 
        clauses (1) to (3), and "subordinate" or "traditional" energy 
        sources are those described in paragraph (c), clauses (4) and 
        (5). 
           (g) For the purposes of this section: 
           (1) "biomass" means herbaceous crops, trees, agricultural 
        waste, and aquatic plant matter, excluding mixed municipal solid 
        waste, as defined in section 115A.03, used to generate 
        electricity; and 
           (2) "low-head hydropower" means a hydropower facility that 
        has a head of less than 66 feet. 
           Subd. 8.  [SUBPOENA POWER.] The task force may issue a 
        subpoena under Minnesota Statutes, section 3.153, to any person 
        for production of information held by that person that is 
        relevant to the work of the task force. 
           Subd. 9.  [REPEALER.] This section is repealed June 30, 
        2000. 
                                   ARTICLE 6 
                                ALTERNATIVE SITE 
           Section 1.  [116C.80] [HIGH-LEVEL RADIOACTIVE WASTE; SPENT 
        NUCLEAR FUEL STORAGE; ALTERNATIVE SITE.] 
           Subdivision 1.  [DEFINITION; DRY CASK STORAGE 
        FACILITY.] For the purposes of this section, "dry cask storage 
        facility" or "facility" means a high-level radioactive waste 
        facility that is located in Goodhue county but not on Prairie 
        Island for storage of spent nuclear fuel produced by a nuclear 
        reactor at the Prairie Island nuclear power generating plant. 
           Subd. 2.  [CERTIFICATE OF SITE COMPARABILITY.] Prior to 
        construction of a dry cask storage facility, the public utility 
        that operates the nuclear power generating power plant at 
        Prairie Island shall obtain a certificate from the environmental 
        quality board that the site for the facility is comparable to 
        the independent spent fuel storage facility site located on 
        Prairie Island for which the public utilities commission granted 
        a certificate of need in docket number E002/CN-91-91. 
           Subd. 3.  [REVIEW BY THE BOARD.] The board shall review the 
        siting procedures and considerations for siting large energy 
        electric generating plants under sections 116C.51 to 116C.69 and 
        rules adopted under those sections and shall adopt, by 
        resolution, after a public comment period, those procedures, 
        considerations, and rules it determines are necessary to 
        designate a site for a dry cask storage facility and to issue a 
        certificate of site comparability.  The siting procedures and 
        considerations must provide for an opportunity for all 
        interested persons to participate. 
           Presented to the governor May 6, 1994 
           Signed by the governor May 10, 1994, 4:05 p.m.

700 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155 ♦ Phone: (651) 296-2868 ♦ TTY: 1-800-627-3529 ♦ Fax: (651) 296-0569