Xcel Energy presented its plan to help Boulder, Colo., achieve its renewable energy goals to the Boulder City Council this week. The concept, while not yet completed, would help the city incorporate approximately 70% renewable energy within the first year of a new franchise agreement between the city and Xcel Energy, the company says.
By 2020, the proposal could help the city approach 90% renewable energy, which could make the city the most green city worldwide, according to Xcel Energy. Such an agreement would have to be approved by voters, as would a new franchise agreement between the city and Xcel Energy. The agreements would also need approval of the Colorado Public Utilities Commission.
Xcel has proposed meeting Boulder's renewable energy goals through a power purchase agreement that would allow for the construction of new wind facilities in Colorado. The city would pay the difference between the cost of the wind energy and Xcel Energy's savings from having the wind energy on the utility's system, according to the utility.
In addition, Xcel envisions having the city pay an additional cost for the first few years of the project's operation because the current cost of wind is greater than the cost of other energy on the Xcel Energy system, the utility says.