IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF MINNESOTA
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA )))
Plaintiff,) Civil Action No.)
) XCEL ENERGY, INC.,) NORTHERN STATES POWER ) MINNESOTA, & ) XCEL ENERGY SERVICES, INC.)
1. The United States of America (“United States”), by the authority of the
Attorney General of the United States and through the undersigned attorneys, acting at
the request of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA” or “Agency”),
NATURE OF ACTION
2. This is a civil action brought by the United States against Xcel Energy, Inc.
Northern States Power Minnesota, and Xcel Energy Services, Inc.(collectively
“Defendants” or “Xcel”) to obtain injunctive relief and civil penalties for violations of
Section 114 of the Clean Air Act (“CAA” or “Act”), 42 U.S.C.§ 7414. The case arises
from Xcel’s refusal to provide information to EPA regarding capital projects planned for
construction at two of Xcel’s Minnesota power plants, the Black Dog and Sherburne
County Plants. Pursuant to Section 114 of the Act, 42 U.S.C.§ 7414, EPA requested this
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information in furtherance of its charge to enforce the Act’s New Source Review, Prevention of Significant Deterioration (“PSD”) preconstruction permitting program, 42 U.S.C.§§ 7470-7479.
JURISDICTION AND VENUE
This Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter of this action pursuant to Section 113(b) of the CAA, 42 U.S.C.§ 7413(b) and 28 U.S.C.§§ 1331, 1345 and 1355.
Venue is proper in this District pursuant to 28 U.S.C.§§ 1391 and 1395, and Section 113(b) of the CAA, 42 U.S.C.§ 7413(b), because Defendants’ principal places of business are located in this district, the violations have occurred and are occurring in this district, and the two power plants at issue are located in this district.
5. The United States has provided notice of the commencement of this action to the Minnesota Air Pollution Control Agency pursuant to CAA Section 113(b), 42
Plaintiff, the United States of America, is acting by authority of the Attorney General of the United States and through the undersigned attorneys, at the request and on behalf of the Administrator of EPA. Authority to bring this action is vested in the Attorney General of the United States by CAA Section 305, 42 U.S.C.§ 7605, and pursuant to 28 U.S.C.§§ 516 and 519.
Xcel Energy, Inc.(“Xcel Energy”) is a publicly traded utility holding company. Its 2009 annual revenues exceeded $9 billion, and it has subsidiary operating
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companies with power plants and other utility operations in eight states. Xcel Energy’s principal place of business is 414 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, Minnesota 54401.
Defendant Northern States Power Company Minnesota (“NSP”) is one of Xcel Energy’s subsidiary operating companies. NSP is an electric and gas utility serving
1.4 million electric customers in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota. NSP shares the same principal place of business as Xcel.
Defendant Xcel Energy Services, Inc. is a subsidiary of Xcel Energy. It shares the same principal place of business as Xcel Energy and provides a full range of administrative and technical support services for Northern States and the other Xcel subsidiaries.
Each of the Defendants are corporate entities and, as such,“persons,” within the meaning of CAA Section 302(e), 42 U.S.C.§ 7602.
THE POWER PLANTS
Xcel Energy and/or its subsidiaries own and/or operate several power plants. Defendant NSP is the owner and/or operator of the Black Dog and Sherburne County (“Sherco”) Plants.
The Sherco Plant is located in Becker, Minnesota on the Mississippi River and 45 miles northwest of the Twin Cities.