Xcel Energy unveils plan to cut plant emissions

DENVER — Xcel Energy is proposing to spend $1.3 billion to convert coal-fired power plants to natural gas and close a plant to comply with a new Colorado law aimed at cutting pollution from power plants.

Xcel Energy, Colorado’s largest electric utility, says the plan released today will help meet statewide goals of reducing emissions of nitrogen, carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide and mercury. The company says it will also save $225 million compared to installing pollution-control equipment.

Gov. Bill Ritter campaigned for the law encouraging the use of natural gas to cut pollution and Xcel Energy supported it. The utility says switching to natural gas is expected to raise customers’ bills on average by 1 percent annually.

State regulators will consider the company’s proposal.



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