Renewable energy in South Dakota
Renewable energy in South Dakota involves production of biofuels and generation of electricity from renewable sources of energy such as wind and hydropower. South Dakota is among the states with the highest percentage of electricity generation from renewable resources, typically over half. In 2011, South Dakota became the first U.S. state to have at least 20% of its electricity generation come from wind power.
Partially lying within the Corn Belt, South Dakota is a leading producer of ethanol fuel from corn.1 As of December, 2011, South Dakota had 15 ethanol plants with a combined production capacity of over 1 billion gallons annually.2 Sioux Falls is home to POET, one of the world's largest producers of ethanol.3 Ethanol plants in South Dakota used 291 million bushels of corn in 2009.4
South Dakota grows soybeans and other oil seed crops and has one biodiesel plant. Midwest Biodiesel Producers, located in Alexandria, is not in operation as of 2011 because the economics are not currently profitable.5
Four dams on the Missouri River generate the bulk of South Dakota's hydropower. Hydropower is the main source of electricity generation in South Dakota.7 These dams are Gavins Point Dam near Yankton, the Fort Randall Dam near Pickstown, the Big Bend Dam near Fort Thompson, and the Oahe Dam near Pierre. They have generating capacities of 44 MW, 320 MW, 293 MW, and 786 MW.89
In 2010, a large amount of wind power generation capacity was added in South Dakota, bringing the total generation capacity to 784 megawatts(MW). Although this is not a large capacity compared with other states, because little electrical power is generated in the state, this capacity allows nearly 23% of electrical power generation to come from wind, leading the U.S.1011
Estimates from the U.S. Department of Energy, EERE indicate that over 800,000 MW of wind capacity could be installed in South Dakota.12 Further expansion of wind power in the state is currently limited by lack of transmission capacity. A line from near Brookings to southeastern Minnesota, expected to be completed in 2015, should help alleviate the problem.13
As of the end of 2011, South Dakota had less than 100 kilowatts of grid connected photovoltaic capacity. The state is ranked 14th in the country in solar power potential.16
South Dakota legislation enacted a voluntary goal of 10% electrical generation from renewable energy sources by 2015.17
- Wind power in the United States
- List of U.S. states by electricity production from renewable sources
- EIA South Dakota state energy profile
- Ethanol production capacity by state
- DSM and POET to make advanced biofuels a reality
- South Dakota Corn utilization statistics
- "SDSA Praises Senate Passage of Tax Legislation, Urges Prompt House Passage". South Dakota Soybean Association. Retrieved 27 December 2011.
- "POET ramps up production of corn oil for biodiesel". domesticfuel.com. Retrieved 27 December 2011.
- U.S. EIA South Dakota state energy profile
- U.S. bureau of reclaimation - Missouri River dams
- EIA Electric Power Monthly December 2011
- AWEA 2001 Annual Report
- Wind Powering America: South Dakota 80 Meter wind map
- South Dakota wind projects limited by lack of transmission capacity
- South Dakota Wind Energy Projects
- Tatanka Wind Farm
- Sherwood, Larry (August 2012). U.S. Solar Market Trends 2011.
- South Dakota Renewable, Recycled and Conserved Energy Objective