PNM, New Mexico's largest electric utility, has proposed a plan to build three new solar projects in 2014 and purchase energy from an existing wind farm beginning in 2015.
Under the proposal, PNM would construct 23 MW of new solar near the greater Albuquerque metro area, bringing the total amount of company-owned solar to 67 MW. The utility would also buy the output from the 102.4 MW Red Mesa Wind Energy Center starting Jan. 1, 2015. The center, located in Cibola County, is owned and operated by NextEra Energy Resources and began commercial operation in 2010.
PNM says its proposal will help the utility meet New Mexico's requirement for a renewable energy portfolio equal to 10% of retail sales through 2014 and 15% starting in 2015, while keeping costs below the state's 3% cost cap. The utility says the plan would add $0.83 to the average residential monthly bill starting in 2014. The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission must approve the proposal.