Xcel Energy, the largest electrical utility in Colorado confirms it is considering the shutdown of two coal-fired generating units ten years earlier than planned.
The company says it plans to replace the two older units at the Comanche Generating Station in Pueblo with a mix of wind, solar and natural gas. One of the units will be closed in 2022 and the other in 2025. The third unit will continue operations.
“We think there’s a material savings. It will depend on the bids, whether it’s a lot cheaper or whether it’s marginally less expansive,” explained David Eves, president of Colorado operations for the Minneapolis-based utility.
The shutdown of the two units would also mean the loss of about 90 jobs over an 8-year period. However, Eves said taking the units offline will reduce carbon dioxide pollution by nearly 4.5 million tons a year.
Before Xcel can proceed with the plans, it will need approval of the Colorado Public Utilities Commission.