The state money would be better spent on alternative or renewable energy sources, Schafer said.
"To grant another extension effectively ties up the state's money, which could be put anywhere," he said.
The factory would use lignite coal from North Dakota to produce 460 million gallons of gasoline a year, the company has said. The plant also would generate electricity that developers plan to sell to out-of-state markets. Developers say the coal-to-liquid fuel plant would capture at least 70 percent of its carbon emissions, inject them underground, for storage or to force more oil and natural gas to the surface for processing.
Backers say the project would create about 700 jobs in western North Dakota, with an average salary of about $70,000 a year.
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