The Right Energy Mix

Some people associate Nodak Electric Cooperative and our wholesale power supplier, Minnkota Power Cooperative, with coal-based energy.

And for good reason. Nodak continues to depend on coal to provide its baseload, 24-7 energy. Baseload energy is needed, after all, to keep homes warm and the lights on when intermittent energy resources such as wind energy are not producing any kilowatt-hours.

We are much more than coal, however. The amount of energy resources coming from baseload-coal declines every time we add a renewable resource. With the addition of 100 megawatts from the Oliver Wind Energy Center near Center, N.D., in late 2016, only about 55 percent of the electric generation capacity mix received by Nodak comes from coal.

Wind energy accounts for about 34 percent and hydroelectric from the Garrison Dam makes up 8 percent of the generation capacity. Other nonrenewable resources total 3 percent. Since hydro is a renewable energy resource as well, about 42 percent of our generation capacity mix comes from renewables.

Not enough for you? There is another alternative. Nodak members can now receive the equivalent of 100 percent of their electricity from renewable resources through the Infinity Renewable Energy Program.

With the program, you can increase the amount of renewable electricity you use without sacrificing your lifestyle or the comfort of your home. By enrolling through Nodak Electric Cooperative, you can choose a designated number of 100 kilowatt-hour blocks, or 100 percent of the electricity used to come from renewable resources. Nodak will allocate the appropriate amount of renewable energy through the program and indicate your purchases on your monthly bill.

While it is not possible to direct where electrons are specifically delivered on the electric grid, it is possible to ensure the renewable energy you have purchased is from a resource connected to your cooperative’s electric system. The record of purchase and the proof that it was reserved for you is done through a renewable energy credit (REC).

As one can see, we have come a long way since Minnkota put up the first commercial-scale wind turbine in the state in 2002. Minnkota and Nodak are among the leaders across the country in wind energy, as evidenced by Minnkota winning the 2010 Wind Cooperative of the Year Award from the U.S. Department of Energy.

At the time, Minnkota and Nodak had wind investments representing more than 30 percent of Minnkota’s total generation capacity.

That number climbed again when Minnkota added the Oliver III wind farm.

Continue Reading »


Beware of scammers posing as Nodak employees

Scammers go to great lengths to try to dupe victims. Nodak Electric Cooperative knows this firsthand.

Nodak Electric Cooperative has been made aware of scammers who have called some of you, our member-owners, to tell you about a past-due bill that needs to be paid immediately or their power will be disconnected. Sometimes the caller instructs members to purchase a prepaid debit or credit card and share the card information for payment.

These incoming calls might be displayed as local numbers. In fact, it’s possible that they might even display Nodak Electric’s real phone number. “Spoofing” occurs when a caller deliberately falsifies the information transmitted to your caller ID display to disguise their identity.

There have even been reports of those numbers mimicking Interactive Voice Response systems, making it seem even more like the caller is a legitimate representative if you hang up and call back. Sadly, this is all part of an effort to steal your money and financial information.

When you’re dealing with a suspicious caller, keep a few things in mind. Nodak will not disconnect an account without first issuing notices to the member. The cooperative’s collection policies provide for a reasonable timeline to make payment arrangements before power is disconnected, if that action becomes necessary. Nodak does not require or strongly recommend a specific payment method or type. We offer a variety of payment options and members can choose which best meets their needs.

Members who think they are dealing with a suspicious call are advised to hang up immediately and call Nodak Electric at 1-800-732-4373 or 701-746-4461 to verify their account status and report this illegal activity.

We encourage you to be alert and protect yourself.

Continue Reading »


Vern Dubuque
Engineering Representative

After 42 years of employment at Nodak Electric, Vern Dubuque has retired. Born and raised on a farm west of Grand Forks, Vern started working part time at Nodak in May 1975. He was promoted to full-time status in January 1976 as an engineering representative, a position he held for his entire career.

Vern and his wife, Pam, have two children and two grandchildren. In his spare time, Vern enjoys deer hunting, fishing and UND hockey. He is looking forward to traveling and spending more time at the lake in the summer.

Lee McLaughlin
Director, District 1

Lee McLaughlin, a Nodak board member since 1991, is retiring.

McLaughlin also represents Nodak on the Minnkota Power Cooperative board and represents Minnkota on the North Dakota statewide board. Through the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, he became a cooperative credentialed director and attended board leadership classes.

McLaughlin earned a bachelor’s degree in agricultural economics from North Dakota State University. He is a former board chair of the Walsh Rural Water District and Walsh County Farmers Union. A former county fair board member, he served 14 years as a 4-H leader.

McLaughlin spent 11 years as vice president of agricultural lending at Bremer Bank in Grafton before returning to the family farm in 1982. In 2008, NDSU honored McLaughlin and his wife, Judy, with the Outstanding Agriculturist Award. The McLaughlins retired from farming in 2011.

They are members of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Lankin, where Lee has served in leadership positions. The McLaughlins have three grown children and seven grandchildren.

Wayne Rocksvold

Wayne Rocksvold, warehouseman, has retired after 31 years of service.

In September 1986, Wayne started at Nodak as a warehouseman, which was a job of many duties.

Retirement for Wayne will include spending more time with his wife, Julie, two kids and playing with his two young grandkids. He will also enjoy cleaning his fleet of motorcycles, a trip to Sturgis and spending every day with his dog, Walter.

Continue Reading »

New year. Same great rebates!

Add home comfort and energy efficiency to your New Year’s resolutions with help from Nodak Electric Cooperative

New electric water heater rebates

Enjoy reliable hot water and save money at the same time with Nodak Electric Cooperative’s electric water heating rebate program.

Water heating is one of the largest energy expenses in most households, making it a smart area to try to improve efficiency. New electric water heaters are among the most efficient and durable products in the market today. With great new incentives from your cooperative, it has never been more affordable to upgrade.

All rebate-qualifying water heaters must be on the off-peak program, which allows your water heater to draw electricity during times of low demand, such as late at night, when it’s less expensive. The water heater is temporarily turned off during high demand periods, both saving energy and money on your monthly bill. Participants in the off-peak program also receive a lower monthly rate for the electricity their water heater uses.

Rebate requirements:

  • Must be new purchased electric water heater installed on Nodak Electric’s system.
  • Must be on off-peak/load control.
  • Must be 240 volts and hard-wired.
  • Tankless water heaters do not qualify for rebate.
  • Hybrid heat pump water heaters do not qualify for rebate.
  • Rebate limit of $500 per member-account.
  • Maximum $300 rebate for coupling of two water heaters in parallel or series.
  • Multifamily dwellings do not qualify for rebate; exceptions considered on case-by-case basis

Contact Nodak Electric Cooperative today to find out more about the water heater rebate program!

Continue Reading »

Nodak awards $2,000 in grants through RDFC funds

Thriving, prosperous communities and nonprofit organizations are essential to the strength of our region. To build that strength in its service area, Nodak Electric Cooperative awarded $2,000 in grants to Gardar Township Hall and Adams Rural Fire District through the Rural Development Finance Corporation (RDFC).

RDFC provided the grant funds in order to make more people aware of its larger loan program that funds community-based projects and nonprofit entities with low-interest financing.

The Gardar Township Hall project received $1,000 through Nodak Electric that was used for expenses related to a major renovation effort on the 100-year-old building. The building was moved this fall to a new, structurally sound foundation where several projects are set to begin.

As a lifelong resident of the township, Nodak board chairman Paul Sigurdson is happy to see the town hall being brought back to life. He remembers when the building was bustling with community dances, civic organizational meetings and school basketball games.

“I’m afraid there wouldn’t be anything left of Gardar if the township hall had gone,” Sigurdson said. “It’s kind of a nostalgic place. We would use it for all sorts of community events and clubs.”

Residents believe the building can once again be the heart of the community. So far, about 75 percent of the $50,000 fundraising goal for Phase 1 of the project has been reached. In addition to moving and stabilizing the building, funds will be used to install new doors and windows, re-side the building and replace the roof.

Phase 2 of the project, which is estimated at $55,000, would include the installation of bathrooms, kitchen facilities, electrical upgrades and a heating system.

The project wouldn’t be possible without countless volunteers who stepped up to provide expertise, labor, materials and other services. Resident Dawn Eckhardt has been coordinating donations for the project locally and through a GoFundMe page. She is also keeping people informed through Facebook.

“It’s been amazing to see the number of people not just locally but all over the country who are connecting with the project and sharing stories,” Eckhardt said. “We already have people contacting us about when it will be ready to start holding events.”

To donate to the project, visit:

New Adams fire department

The Adams Rural Fire District also received a $1,000 grant to help construct a new 6,250-square-foot fire hall on Main Street. Nodak Director Luther Meberg presented the check to Fire District Board President Jody Erickson this fall.

“Every little bit helps,” Erickson said. “It keeps our costs down, and we’re very thankful for that.”

The $300,000 project replaces the town’s existing fire hall that was built in the 1960s. Space limitations were a driving factor in building new, a decision that received strong support from the community, Meberg said.

“There were height issues with the fire trucks,” Meberg said of the existing building. “They could barely get them inside the door. The place was jampacked.”

The new fire hall will have plenty of room to work on vehicles and has a dedicated training area for the 15-20 volunteers and the associated quick response team. The new building provided an added bonus to the community, as a new mechanic shop will soon open in the old fire hall.

“It’s a very cool project,” Erickson said. “Filling a hole on Main Street in a small town with something like this doesn’t happen very often.”

Continue Reading »

Trip of a lifetime

It’s not often that writing a two-page essay leads to the trip of a lifetime. But for Britton Bina, the extra effort won him an all-expense-paid week in Washington, D.C. The junior at Park River Area High School was one of 1,700 students from around the country selected to participate in the 2016 Electric Cooperative Youth Tour held June 11-17. Bina had the opportunity to learn more about electric cooperatives, visit famous historical monuments and get to know fellow students from cooperatives across the country. Th e action-packed tour included visits to the Smithsonian, the National Archives, Arlington National Cemetery, the WW I, Vietnam and Korean War Veterans Memorials as well as the Jefferson and Lincoln Memorials and the Washington Monuments.

In addition to sightseeing, Bina and other North Dakotans on the tour had the chance to meet and ask questions of the North Dakota delegation. Nodak Electric Cooperative sponsored Bina, whose parents, Cameron and Estelle, are Nodak members. Bina’s winning essay was in response to this topic: Pick one of the four Touchstone Energy® core values – innovation, integrity, accountability and commitment to community – and describe how you see this in action at Nodak Electric Cooperative. Bina wrote about Nodak’s commitment to serving its members no matter the circumstances. He highlighted the efforts to bring power out to farms in the 1940s and the significant work necessary to restore electric service during storms. “Through rough times, the merging of companies and the harshest of weather, Nodak has and will continue to give people electricity when they need it,” Bina wrote. He also highlighted when the lights came on for the first time for his great grandfather. “Since my great grandfather flipped that switch many years ago, many amazing lights have shone bright, all because Nodak has the commitment to keep them shining bright,” Bina’s essay concluded.

The Youth Tour program continues to foster the grassroots spirit of the rural electric cooperatives by demonstrating to our youth how our government works and what the electric cooperative business model is all about. Since 1964, the nation’s electric cooperatives have sponsored about 50,000 high school students on education sessions in Washington, D.C. Nodak will be looking to sponsor another deserving student for the 2017 Youth Tour to be held June 10-16. For more information, check our this page. The essay deadline is Jan. 31, 2017.

Continue Reading »
Mobile Menu Toggle
Call Nodak Electric