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NorthWestern Energy Responds to the EPA Clean Power Plan

Aug 03, 2015

Butte, Mont. – Aug. 3, 2015 – NorthWestern Energy has been working for months to develop an understanding of the draft EPA Clean Power Plan, and its potential effects on NorthWestern’s customers. 

“Now, we will carefully study the final rule and will work with others in Montana and South Dakota to consider all of our options,” said Bob Rowe, NorthWestern Energy’s President and Chief Executive Officer.  “States will have a key role in implementation; we will work with state agencies and others to ensure that the investments our customers have supported in zero emissions resources are recognized.”

NorthWestern will continue to focus on its customers and their desire for safe, reliable, affordable electricity as it works to fully understand the final Clean Power Plan rules. Rowe said existing investments in clean, renewable generation and energy efficiency should be recognized in the EPA Clean Power Plan.

“Our customers deserve credit for what’s already been accomplished in energy efficiency and the significant amount of renewable energy in our portfolio,” Rowe said.

In Montana, NorthWestern has built a renewable-based system, thanks especially to the purchase of the integrated Montana hydroelectric system in 2014, along with substantial wind generation. About 56 percent of the electricity that NorthWestern provides to its Montana customers is generated with zero-carbon water and wind.

Along with its significant investment in renewable energy, NorthWestern realizes that cost-effective energy saving is critical to the state’s energy future. NorthWestern is responsible for about 80 percent of the energy efficiency achieved in Montana.

Coal continues to be important to NorthWestern’s ability to provide customers with reliable, affordable electricity.  NorthWestern’s 30 percent stake in Colstrip Unit 4 provides about one-fourth of the electricity used to serve Montana customers.

“Although NorthWestern owns only about 8 percent of the coal generation in Montana, Colstrip 4’s 90 percent availability to meet peak demand means it is critical to meet our customers’ needs, especially on the hottest and coldest days,” said Rowe.

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About NorthWestern Energy
NorthWestern Energy provides electricity and natural gas in the Upper Midwest and Northwest, serving approximately 692,600 customers in Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska.  More information on NorthWestern Energy is available on the company's website at

Media Contact:
Butch Larcombe
(866) 622-8081

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