New Clean Heat Plan proposed in Colorado
Plan preserves reliability and affordability, advances clean energy options for customers
Xcel Energy’s new Clean Heat Plan is the company’s first significant proposal to strategically reduce greenhouse gas emissions across its natural gas system. The plan provides a pathway to reduce emissions to meet state goals and make progress toward Xcel Energy’s net-zero emissions goal for its natural gas business.
The plan fast-tracks clean, resilient, innovative solutions while ensuring customers receive the reliable, affordable energy they need to power their lives. Designed to accommodate customers’ unique needs, the plan offers a portfolio of solutions customers can choose that work for them, leading to greater emission reductions at a lower cost. That may include new energy efficiency options, renewable natural gas and carbon offset programs to reduce their carbon footprints, and support for transitioning to electric heating and appliances.
The effort is in response to Colorado’s Clean Heat Standard legislation, which aligns with the company’s vision to provide a net-zero natural gas system by 2050, with an interim goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25% from the supply, distribution and customer use of natural gas by 2030.
“Natural gas remains the most affordable way to heat customer homes and businesses, and customers deserve more choice to determine their own energy futures,” said Robert Kenney, president of Xcel Energy – Colorado. “Success will require partnership, collaboration and new, creative ways to accelerate customer choices so that customers can determine what emissions reductions solutions work best for their own needs and preferences.”
Delivering lower-carbon energy is essential to Xcel Energy’s mission. The company is striving to operate the cleanest natural gas system possible, as the fuel remains highly flexible and efficient for millions of furnaces, boilers, water heaters, stoves and other appliances across the colder climates Xcel Energy serves in Colorado. The Clean Heat Plan provides opportunities to test new tools and effective alternatives for customers, and it includes a broad range of options – including hydrogen and other clean fuels, electrification options, methane emission reductions and more – that will expand over time, especially in growing communities.
"Reducing emissions from the natural gas system will take collaboration and cooperation. That’s why we’re partnering with others to jointly find solutions, drive innovation together and make smart, strategic investments,” continued Kenney.
A suite of demonstration projects within the Clean Heat Plan are supported by a diverse set of organizations and key customers including the Colorado Energy Office, Energy Outreach Colorado, the Southern Ute Indian Tribe, the City and County of Denver, the City of Boulder and Boulder County, Rocky Mountain Institute, the Colorado School of Mines, Williams, Kuva Systems, Denver International Airport and Ball Arena.
“Prioritizing customer choice, we are committed to keeping costs and bills low for customers, and our Clean Heat Plan is how we achieve emission reduction goals responsibly,” Kenney added.
Xcel Energy is taking advantage of new federal funding available through the Inflation Reduction Act and the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to fuel the clean energy economy and combat climate change, advance environmental justice and create good-paying, union jobs. The company is working with state leaders to help secure available funding to make smart, strategic investments and test emerging technologies.