2018-06-08 23:33:52 UTC
Xcel Energy Colorado submitted an electric resource plan to state regulators
Wednesday, calling for a major new build-out of renewable energy resources and
the retirement of two coal units, roughly a decade early.
Comanche Units 1 and 2 are capable of producing a combined 660 megawatts of
coal-fired generation, which represents approximately one-third of Xcel
Colorado’s remaining coal fleet. Under the utility’s proposal, the retirements
would coincide with adding more than 1,800 megawatts of solar and wind, paired
with 275 megawatts of battery storage, and 383 megawatts of existing gas
In a business-as-usual scenario, Xcel Colorado would keep the Comanche units
in operation and add 450 megawatts of additional energy resources. While the
economic benefits of both plans are reasonable, the clean energy proposal is
more compelling because “it *delivers lower costs along with substantial
environmental and renewable energy gains*,” the filing states.
“We have plans in Colorado…that will have us at a 60 percent carbon reduction
and 55 percent renewable energy by 2026,” he said, adding, “at no incremental
In January, the utility released the results of a solicitation that returned
a median price bid of $21 per megawatt-hour for wind-plus-storage projects and
a median bid of $36 per megawatt-hour for solar-plus-storage.
Bids highlighted in Xcel's new electric resource filing are even lower. The
proposal includes "unprecedented low pricing" across a range of generation
technologies, with wind at levelized pricing between $11-$18 per
megawatt-hour, solar between $23-$27 per megawatt-hour, and solar-plus-storage
between $30-$32 per megawatt-hour, the document states.