Colstrip has a combined peak output of 2,094 megawatts, making it the second-largest coal-fired generating facility west of the Mississippi River. PSE owns one-third of that output – or 677 MW – enough to meet the electricity needs of about 500,000 households.
Colstrip is located approximately 120 miles southeast of Billings, Mont., or close to 1,000 miles east of Seattle. The facility is situated atop the vast Fort Union coal formation, which underlies much of eastern Montana and parts of Wyoming, the Dakotas, and Saskatchewan.
For PSE and Colstrip’s other Pacific Northwest utility owners, the plant’s power output travels about 250 miles west, to Townsend, Mont., over two 500-kilovolt transmission lines the companies collectively own. From there, Colstrip power moves across the Bonneville Power Administration’s transmission system before reaching the utilities’ individual transmission grids. Learn more about who owns the Colstrip transmission line here.>>>
Operations & Employees
Talen Energy, which is owned by Riverstone Holdings, currently operates the Colstrip Power Generating Station. The workers at the Colstrip Units are employed by Talen Montana.
PSE in Montana
Puget Sound Energy has been a partner in Montana's energy economy since Colstrip was built in the 1970s.
PSE has purchased millions of tons of Montana coal, which has resulted in hundreds of millions in contributions to the Montana Coal Trust Fund for the benefit of all Montanans.