Stacy A. Cook, Vice President and General Manager of Koda Energy, at the combined heat and power biomass plant in Shakopee, Minnesota. Photo by Craig Lassig for Midwest Energy News.

Cheap natural gas a challenge for cogeneration plant

In 2006 when a Minnesota group announced a $60 million biomass cogeneration plant, spot prices for natural gas topped $13 per million Btu. By the time the power plant began operating in May 2009, they had plunged below $4. Operators say they’ve stayed viable by cutting costs and upgrading efficiency.