Xcel Energy aims for zero-carbon electricity by 2050 | SteamboatToday.com

Xcel Energy aims for zero-carbon electricity by 2050

Xcel Energy owns the majority of the Hayden Station power plant between Hayden and Steamboat Springs in Northwest Colorado. (Photo by John F. Russell)

DENVER — Xcel Energy rolled out a clean energy vision in Denver on Tuesday that will deliver 100 percent carbon-free electricity to its customers by 2050 in the eight states it serves, including Colorado.

As part of its vision, the company also announced plans to reduce carbon emissions 80 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, an increase from its previous goal of 60 percent in the same timeframe.

The new goals are the most ambitious announced to date within the electric power industry.

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Xcel Energy owns 75.5 percent of Unit One and 37.4 percent of Unit Two at the Hayden Station power plant, and Twentymile Coal Co. is currently in the review process of a proposed expansion. In the coming days, the Steamboat Pilot & Today will explore the impacts of Xcel’s carbon-reduction plans on the two Northwest Colorado employers.

“We’re accelerating our carbon reduction goals because we’re encouraged by advances in technology, motivated by customers who are asking for it and committed to working with partners to make it happen,” Xcel Energy chairman, President and CEO Ben Fowke said.

Xcel already has reduced carbon emissions 35 percent since 2005 and believes its 2030 goal can be achieved affordably with renewable energy and other technologies currently available.

“When I launched my campaign back in 2017, we had a bold agenda for our state to get to 100 percent renewable by 2040,” Colorado Governor-Elect Jared Polis said. “Xcel Energy’s exciting announcement today — along with the strong climate goals communities like Pueblo, Summit County, Ft. Collins, Denver and others across the state have embraced — shows we are leading the way forward right here in Colorado by committing to a renewable and clean energy future.”

Achieving the long-term vision of zero-carbon electricity requires technologies that are not yet cost effective or commercially available, according to Xcel.

“Our goals are ambitious and achieving them requires a long runway. We’re starting the conversation today to make sure we can achieve this groundbreaking transition while continuing to keep energy affordable and reliable for customers,” said Fowke.

Read more at APnews.com

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