May 28, 2020

With Iowa approval, Cardinal-Hickory Creek line set to connect people with clean energy

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PRESS RELEASE: 5/28/2020                          Contact: Aaron Klemz, Director of Public Engagement


ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA -- Late yesterday, the Iowa Utilities Board approved the Iowa section of the Cardinal-Hickory Creek transmission line that will connect clean, renewable wind resources in Iowa with customers across the Midwest. The Cardinal-Hickory Creek line has now been approved by regulators in Wisconsin and Iowa, and has all of the needed state approvals to begin construction.

Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy (MCEA) was part of the Clean Energy Intervener group that joined the Iowa Cardinal-Hickory Creek case to ensure that the regional benefits of this project for the development and distribution of clean energy were considered as part of the decision. Iowa Environmental Council, Fresh Energy, and Clean Grid Alliance comprised the rest of the Clean Energy Intervener group in Iowa. MCEA also serves as legal representation for Fresh Energy and Clean Grid Alliance in the legal and regulatory proceedings in both Wisconsin and Iowa.

"Without the infrastructure to connect people to clean renewable energy, we can't meet the challenge of the climate crisis," stated Amelia Vohs, staff attorney at the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy. "Regulators in Iowa and Wisconsin have both found that the Cardinal-Hickory Creek line will promote the growth of renewable energy, and provide customers with access to low-cost renewable energy."

There is a pending appeal of the Wisconsin Public Service Commission's approval of the line. MCEA is an intervener in that appeal, and will continue to advocate for needed infrastructure to build a clean energy economy that provides access to renewable energy across the region.