Grainbelt Express moves closer to start of construction


The immense project designed to carry wind-powered electricity from Southwest Kansas and across Missouri to Illinois and Indiana is closer to actual construction.

For more than ten years, developers of the $7 billion Grain Belt Express, a project aimed at carrying 5,000 megawatts of power more than 800 miles, have faced regulatory fights and legal challenges. But recently, the Missouri Public Service Commission issued final approval for the project’s latest revised plan to carry half of the power to the state power grid.

“What we received in Missouri last week is really a major milestone,” said Shashank Sane, executive vice president of transmission at Invenergy, the Chicago-based energy developer that bought the project from its original developers in 2018.

Actual construction of the first phase which consists of building the line from Kansas to Missouri, won’t start until 2025. It could take two to three years to finish the first phase. A start date for phase two, Missouri-to-Indiana, has not been set.

But FERC is now being asked to reject the entire project. The Missouri Landowners Alliance on Friday urged the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to require the company to re=applly for permission for the project, according to Utility Dive.

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