Since today was approximately 150 degrees outside in the Denver metro area, we thought it would be a good time to warn you to watch your wallets because energy prices could be on the rise. According to a new plan by Xcel to divest from hydrocarbons for renewable fuels, Xcel Energy proposes shutting down two of the three power stations from the plant that the company itself named its 2018 “Plant of the Year.” Also in its mind-numbing proposal, Xcel has promised that doing so, and shifting its related resources into (super expensive, super intermittent) sources like solar and wind, will provide its ratepayers savings by 2046.
It just doesn’t pass the commonsense test. Turns out the numbers don’t work either, according to the Colorado Coalition of Ratepayers, a group affiliated with the Independence Institute.
A lot of us will be dead by 2046, which is probably what Xcel is hoping for, as their plan will screw ratepayers for generations. And since the utility is essentially a monopoly (Colorado is one of 21 states in which residents have no choice in energy provider), if the Colorado Public Utilities Commission approves its proposal, we’re all pretty likely to be blowing hot air into broken wind turbines in order to keep our lights on, all while paying more than what we do now. Sounds awesome, right?
No, it sucks. We are all about celebrating capitalism. Cronyism is a different story. If you are an Xcel customer, your rates likely have risen 62% over the past 14 years for a service that never improves. If Xcel gets its way with the Commission, it’s going to get a hell of a lot worse, especially for low-income people.
Rarely do we issue a call to action, but to quote former Vice President Joe Biden, this is a big effing deal. Seriously, write the Commission and tell them that you know, and you know that they know, just how raw a deal this is for Xcel’s Colorado customers. The Commission is the last line of defense for the public interest, which is itself kind of screwed up. But let’s let them know that we’ll owe them a beer or twenty if they side with customers over a gigantic Minnesota-based monopoly, eh.