Colorado Electric, a subsidiary of Black Hills Corp., has submitted a proposal to the Colorado Public Utilities Commission seeking approval of a plan that would add up to 200 MW of new renewable energy resources to its southern Colorado system.
As proposed, Black Hills Energy’s Renewable Advantage plan would open a competitive solicitation process in December, seeking proposals for utility-scale projects to include wind, solar and battery storage.
While the company’s Colorado electric utility has sufficient power resources to meet customers’ day-to-day electricity needs, Renewable Advantage is expected to deliver significant customer savings by supplementing existing power supplies with lower-cost renewable energy resources.
Subject to commission approval, the addition of up to 200 MW of new renewable energy would result in approximately 60% of the utility’s southern Colorado generation portfolio coming from carbon-free resources by 2023. With the recent addition of the 60 MW Busch Ranch II wind project, the company will achieve 30% renewables by 2020, fulfilling the requirements of Colorado’s renewable energy mandates.
“We are fully supportive of efforts to add more clean, renewable energy in southern Colorado, especially given the opportunity to lower energy costs for our customers,” says Linden R. Evans, president and CEO of Black Hills Corp. “In the coming years, we’ll continue to expand our renewable energy offerings to meet customer and community demand.”
According to the company’s plan, bidders will have until Feb. 15, 2020, to submit their project proposals, which will then be reviewed by an independent evaluator overseen by the Colorado commission.
Based on the outcome of the bidding process, projects would be placed into service starting in 2022.