Dakota Electric sources its wholesale power from a generation and transmission cooperative called Great River Energy. Great River Energy manages a diverse, regionally connected, power portfolio to deliver reliable, affordable electricity to 1.7 million people across two-thirds of Minnesota through 27 member-owner cooperatives.

A Responsible & Balanced Approach

Great River Energy maintains a balanced resource portfolio that provides its members, including Dakota Electric, with reliable, cost-effective power supplies. This balanced portfolio includes wind generation, natural gas peaking generation and market contracts. Great River Energy has built this portfolio to provide the reliability we need today with an eye toward the future and compliance with current and future requirements. Through a proactive strategy, Great River Energy transitioned to a less carbon intensive resource portfolio while maintaining reliability and keeping power cost affordable.

Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) & Carbon-Free Future

Great River Energy recently filed its IRP with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission. An IRP is a planning document that lays out a utility’s expected needs and how it will serve its consumers over the next 20 years. This IRP is particularly important because it is GRE’s first IRP since the Legislature passed Carbon Free by 2040 in 2023. GRE’s IRP lays out a path to serve members with energy that is reliable, affordable and environmentally responsible.

Dakota Electric’s power supply portfolio is well positioned for Carbon Free by 2040. By reducing coal-based energy and more than doubling renewable energy, Great River Energy anticipates that by 2035 its retail electric sales will be provided by a 90% carbon-free power supply in alignment with the Minnesota carbon-free standard. Dakota Electric has aided this transition by installing 6MW of utility scale solar and assisting our members in their pursuit of distributed energy resources such as rooftop solar.

Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO)

MISO oversees, and independently controls, the power grid over much of the middle of the United States spanning 15 U.S. states and Manitoba, Canada. MISO ensures reliable, affordable energy through grid management, energy market oversight and transmission planning for its participating utilities. MISO maintains grid reliability, optimizes energy markets for cost-effective supply and plans transmission infrastructure for future needs. Dakota Electric, through Great River Energy, has participated in MISO for nearly 20 years. This participation becomes more important as the grid modernizes and transitions away from legacy generation resources. MISO participation lowers costs and improves efficiency by preventing or delaying the construction of generating facilities. GRE’s participation in MISO guarantees reliable and affordable electricity for Dakota Electric members.