Two more utilities in Arizona and Colorado are moving to accelerate closure of coal plants and replace them with renewable energy backed by batteries, joining a broader push in both states to shift to more cost-effective clean energy options even in the absence of state mandates. To learn more, read this article on GreenTech Media titled “2 More Western Utilities Move to Close Coal Plants Early, Shifting to Renewables and Storage”.
- Tucson Electric Power (TEP) released a long-term energy plan that calls for closing its remaining coal plants by 2032, on the way to 70 percent renewables by 2035.
- Additionally, TEP is adding 1.7 gigawatts of solar, 850 megawatts of wind and nearly 1.4 gigawatts of energy storage by 2035.
- Arizona Public Service has committed to 100 percent clean power by 2050, including an interim target of 65 percent by 2030.
- Colorado Springs Utilities is committed to close its remaining coal plants by 2030.
- Under its 2020 Electric Resource Plan, Colorado Springs Utilities serving about 222,000 customers will replace its 416 megawatts of coal-fired power with about 500 megawatts of new wind energy, about 150 megawatts of solar power and more than 400 megawatts of battery storage.
Path to 100% Perspective:
Colorado and Arizona utilities are modeling a growing trend of ambitious renewable energy goals motivated by lower costs for ratepayers and not by state mandates. As the flexibility of renewables increases, utilities are able to innovatively develop their own plans with milestones that seem to motivate other organizations to follow suit.