Jimmy Lovrien is a reporter for the Duluth News Tribune. He spent the summer of 2015 as an intern for the Duluth News Tribune and was hired full time in October 2017 as a reporter for the Weekly Observer. He also reported for the Lake County News-Chronicle in 2017-18. Lovrien grew up in Alexandria, Minn., but moved to Duluth in 2013 to attend The College of St. Scholastica. Lovrien graduated from St. Scholastica in 2017 with a bachelor's degree in English and history. He also spent a summer studying journalism at the University of California, Berkeley.
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The future of a $700 million natural gas power plant proposed for Superior is now in the hands of Wisconsin regulators. La Crosse-based Dairyland Power Cooperative and Duluth-based Minnesota Power submitted applications for a certificate of convenience and necessity with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin last week for the Nemadji Trail Energy Center, a 550-megawatt plant that companies want to build on a plot of land between Enbridge Energy Superior terminal and the Nemadji River.
Walking down his icy driveway, Gordy Oftedahl gestured toward what was left of the Globe Elevator in Superior — a pile of charred timber sticking through the snow and a 150-foot steel tower, its frame warped by heat. "You work your whole life to try to get something really nice and then this happens," Oftedahl, the elevator's owner, told the News Tribune recently.
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz is weighing whether or not his administration will pull an appeal opposing Enbridge Energy's Line 3 oil pipeline. The appeal, filed by the Minnesota Department of Commerce in the final days of Gov. Mark Dayton's administration, asks the Minnesota Court of Appeals to reconsider the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission's decision to grant the project a certificate of need, arguing the Calgary-based Enbridge did not prove the pipeline was needed.
Although the Great Lakes shipping season ends next week, work at shipyards is ramping up. When the Soo Locks, which link Lake Superior to the other Great Lakes, close at midnight Jan. 15 until late March, ships on the Great Lakes will dock for seasonal maintenance and modernization, with eight freighters scheduled for winter layups in the Port of Duluth-Superior, the Duluth Seaway Port Authority announced Tuesday. "For the shipyards, this is the busiest time of the year," Lake Carriers' Association Glen Nekvasil said.
The iron ore mining company trying to restart the former Essar site in Nashwauk missed a year-end construction deadline, triggering financial penalties. Mesabi Metallics failed to start construction on its value-added facility by Dec. 31, 2018, which has caused its rent and royalty payments to the state to double until "the failure to meet the lease term is corrected," assistant DNR commissioner Barb Naramore said in an email to the News Tribune Monday afternoon. The missed deadline was first reported by the Mesabi Daily News.
Allete Clean Energy is growing. Standing in front of a TV in the lobby of the company's Downtown Duluth headquarters, Allete Clean Energy President Allan S. Rudeck Jr. pointed on a map to the six operational wind farms acquired since 2011. With turbines already spinning in Minnesota, Iowa, Oregon and Pennsylvania, projects in North Dakota and Montana will be added to that map as they come online in 2019. The company, founded by its parent company Allete in 2011, has expanded so dramatically, in part, because of a rising demand for emission-free, renewable energy.
The College of St. Scholastica's 12th president will step down within the year. President Colette Geary, who has served as president of the school since July 2016, will leave by December 2019, Geary and Board of Trustees Chair Chris Dolan wrote in letters emailed to staff, faculty and students Thursday morning.
A contractor working at the Husky Energy refinery in Superior said the April 26 explosion sent him 15 feet into the air, resulting in severe injuries when he hit the floor, according to a lawsuit filed against the refinery and its owners.
The Minnesota Department of Commerce is again expressing opposition to Enbridge Energy's proposed Line 3 oil pipeline.
The Bureau of Land Management proposed renewing hardrock mineral leases in the Rainy River Watershed near the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness on Thursday, initiating a 30-day comment period. The federal leases belong to Twin Metals, a wholly owned subsidiary of Chilean mining conglomerate Antofagasta, which is planning a copper mine along the Kawishiwi River near Ely that critics say could send tainted runoff into the BWCAW.