Xcel Energy Reduces Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Expand Conservation and Renewable Energy

Xcel Energy today announced plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, expand conservation and renewable energy and improve the efficiency of its electricity generation fleet in Minnesota.

"Conservation, renewable energy and carbon reduction are the cornerstones of our plan," said Richard C. Kelly, Xcel Energy's chairman, president and CEO, as the company filed its 2007 Resource Plan with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission. "We are pleased to propose exceeding aggressive carbon reduction milestones in a manner that creates the least-cost resource mix for our customers."

The plan, which covers 2008 through 2022, describes how Xcel Energy aims to meet renewable energy, conservation and greenhouse gas reduction goals established by the 2007 Minnesota Legislature.

"Xcel Energy fully supports Minnesota's ambitious efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions," said Dave Sparby, acting president and CEO, Northern States Power Co.-Minnesota, an Xcel Energy company. "We will accomplish this goal cost-effectively by relying more on wind power and other renewable resources, increasing energy conservation and increasing our reliance on non-greenhouse gas emitting nuclear power.

"Our plan would reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 22 percent from 2005 levels by 2020, a 6 million ton reduction, while pursuing the lowest-cost expansion path, meeting increased customer needs and maintaining system reliability."

Sparby noted that the initiatives outlined in the plan will be on top of efforts already under way to meet other environmentally friendly objectives, such as aggressive mercury-reduction goals.

The plan includes a new forecast that projects a 1 percent annual increase in electricity demand, even as the company works to achieve annual energy savings of up to 1.5 percent of retail electricity sales as required in state law.

Among the plan's key provisions:

Renewables/Wind Power: Meet Minnesota's Renewable Energy Standard, which requires Xcel Energy by 2020 to supply 30 percent of its customers' electricity needs with renewable resources. Meeting the Minnesota standard, combined with renewable requirements in other jurisdictions the company serves, will require Xcel Energy to add 2,600 megawatts of new wind resources to its system by 2020, over and above the 1,300 megawatts of wind resource planned to be on line by the end of 2008. To begin acquiring these resources, Xcel Energy soon will issue a Request

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