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The director of sustainability for Aspen Skiing Company on Monday trumpeted the results of a rural electric association board election that saw the local co-op flip to “a supermajority of progressives who support clean energy and energy efficiency, stable prices and fiscal prudence.”
Officials for Xcel Energy, Colorado’s largest utility, said Wednesday the Minnesota-based company is willing to consider upping the state’s renewable energy standard (RES) to 30 percent by the year 2020, a proposal highlighted by Gov. Ritter in a speech marking the beginning of the legislative session this week and at the center of the first House bill introduced yesterday as the session got underway.
As lawmakers once again try to put the heat on the state’s largest rural electric co-op this legislative session, at least one state senator...
Efforts to reform the recalcitrant Intermountain Rural Electric Association, the state’s largest energy cooperative, will be more subtle this legislative session. Instead of seeking, for example, to mandate energy efficiency, a Boulder lawmaker and new energy advocates are looking to change the way co-op board members are elected.
A Boulder lawmaker says she’ll introduce a bill next session aimed at cleaning up questionable campaign practices in rural electric association (REA) board elections.Claire Levy, D-Boulder, told the Colorado Independent Tuesday she is still working on a draft of the bill she’ll introduce in the upcoming legislative session in January, but she outlined the basics.
The director of sustainability for one of the state’s largest ski companies says there is a quiet revolution going at the state’s rural electric co-ops, where previously ignored and under-publicized board elections are seeing some real upheaval.
One of the ironies of the controversy over proposed Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) oversight of the state’s second largest utility, Tri-State, is that the rural electric co-op arguably most in need of increased state supervision, the IREA, would be unaffected. Eighteen of the state’s 22 rural electric co-ops (REAs) would be impacted by PUC approval of Tri-State’s integrated resource plans — annual documents that detail the utility’s energy loads — but the IREA (Intermountain Rural Electric Association) and three other co-ops don’t get their power from Tri-State.
Holy Cross Energy, viewed by many as one of the most progressive rural electric co-ops in the state, isn’t nearly forward-thinking enough for some renewable-energy advocates looking to oust longtime president of the board Tom Turnbull, a Carbondale-area rancher. In a little-publicized board election to be determined June 5, Turnbull is being targeted by Glenwood Springs businessman and Carbondale resident Marshall Foote, who has the endorsement of the most environmentally aggressive ski company in the state, Aspen SkiCo.
The first thing former school principal Mike Galvin said he’ll do if elected to the board of Intermountain Rural Electric Association, the state’s largest energy co-op, is enact sweeping reform of the election process itself.
A tiered system of electrical rates that increase as residential consumers increase their use, especially during peak consumption periods, has ignited a power play between Colorado's electric co-ops. According to one rural co-op CEO, who helped draft a bill that makes such rates possible, the industry's future is moving greater use of renewable sources and energy conservation. Another co-op chief, heavily tied to coal-fired power, argues a voluntary alternative-energy system will sock residents in the pocketbook when they can least afford it.
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