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In the West, it’s always about the water

“We have to get serious about water,” Republican gubernatorial candidate Dan Maes said during a debate Saturday. When the Colorado Independent asked Democratic nominee John...

Boulder lets Xcel franchise deal lapse while city explores greener energy

BOULDER – After failing to reach an agreement with Xcel Energy that would adequately reduce the city’s reliance on fossil fuels, the Boulder City Council this week guaranteed the city will allow a 20-year Xcel franchise agreement to expire at the end of this year by voting not to put the issue on the November ballot.

Levy to sow seeds of ‘solar gardens’ with bill aimed at...

State Rep. Claire Levy, D-Boulder, always legislatively active on the renewable energy front, will introduce a bill this session to legalize community “solar gardens,”...

PUC to weigh Xcel Comanche 3 delays, gas rate overcharge later...

In a pre-holiday rush, Xcel Energy rate increase cases are flying fast and furiously before the Colorado Public Utilities Commission these days. The PUC Wednesday...

Colorado AG files complaint seeking $100M cut in Xcel rate hike

The Colorado attorney general’s office filed papers today asking Xcel Energy to cut more than $100 million from a proposed rate increase of $136 million, according to documents filed with the Colorado Public Utilities Commission last week.

Xcel Energy’s $15,000 board dinners questioned in state rate-hike hearing

With Xcel Energy on pace to disconnect power to some 70,000 Coloradans this year for nonpayment, energy activists are openly questioning why ratepayers should pick up the tab for lavish executive board-member dinners, hotel and spa retreats and luxury box tickets to professional sports games.

Beetle kill on the Hill; Colorado lawmakers make funding case in...

Two state lawmakers from mountain districts are working Capitol Hill the next couple of days in a bid to get the federal government to find some funds to fight the growing mountain pine beetle infestation that has laid waste to more than 2 million acres of Colorado forest. State Rep. Christin Scanlan, D-Dillon, and state Sen. Dan Gibbs, D-Silverthorne, whose districts have been ravaged by the rice-sized bugs, testified before the House Subcommittee on National Parks, Forest and Public Lands Tuesday that resulting wildfires could knock out the nation’s electrical grid and spoil water supplies for millions of downstream consumers in other states.

Wind, solar group prodding Xcel to address transmission “bottleneck”

The Governor’s Energy Office has an ambitious goal of expediting the addition of another 1,000 megawatts of renewable energy generation to Colorado’s electricity grid in the next few years, but the single biggest hurdle may be adding the necessary transmission lines. Representatives of companies building utility-scale renewable projects like the 8-megawatt SunEdison solar plant in Colorado’s San Luis Valley say sun and wind generation facilities can be permitted and built in under two years, but transmission lines can take more than a decade to become reality.

Advocates say energy bill too watered down to make a big...

Henry Waxman, D-Calif., may not “have the nuts” to pass the American Clean Energy and Security Act (at least according to his GOP counterpart on the House Energy and Commerce Committee), but some Colorado environmentalists say the bill itself doesn’t have the teeth it needs to truly transform America’s energy infrastructure.

Western Slope officials split on promise of a nuclear-powered oil-shale industry

Recent talk of using nuclear energy to power the oil shale industry on Colorado’s Western Slope has elicited a wide range of reactions from government officials at what would be the epicenter of such a move — from serious doubt to matter-of-fact support.