Coal Creek Station has 23 groundwater monitoring wells, 23 of which have been polluted above federal advisory levels based on samples collected between September 14, 2015 and November 20, 2019. Groundwater at this site contains unsafe levels of sulfate, boron, lithium, selenium, cobalt, arsenic, fluoride, barium, lead and radium.Site description
Coal Creek Station is a 1,151-MW coal-fired electric generation facility located 10 miles northwest of Washburn, North Dakota in McLean County. The plant was owned by Great River Energy and opened in 1979. In 2021 Rainbow Energy Center purchased the facility with a plan to retrofit the facility using carbon capture and add 900-MW of wind energy before the end of 2023. CCRs are managed in composite-lined surface water impoundment cells and dry waste facilities. Great River Energy operates four regulated CCR disposal units at this site: the Drained Pond System, Upstream 91 Pond, Upstream 92 Pond, and Southeast Section 16 Landfill. Coal Creek Station is among the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's list of potential damage cases, indicating that coal ash disposal at the site has potentially polluted groundwater or surface water at levels which threaten human health and the environment.