While Xcel Energy hit a new 52-week high in trading yesterday, it encountered a few lows in its relationship with the state of Colorado. That’s because Xcel’s $1.3 billion plan to shut down some coal-fired plants won’t meet pollution-cutting goals or a 2017 deadline as promised, reports The Denver Post. Xcel wants to keep Denver’s Cherokee 4 plant running until 2022 and has the support of the Colorado Public Utilities Commission in asking state public health officials if a “truncated” plan, in which the plant remains open, would meet goals.
The short answer is “no,” says the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
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“The Department does not believe that the truncated plan will meet all reasonably foreseeable air pollution requirements,” the agency writes in a commission filing.
That puts the participating agencies in a “standoff,” writes the Denver Business Journal, because state health department officials must approve the plan before the PUC can sign off. Xcel says it can’t hasten the closure of the Cherokee 4 coal unit, as it lacks room to tear down the three other coal units while constructing two new natural-gas plants.