Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Xcel slow-walking solar promise

Xcel Energy uses South Dakota as a tax shelter and is responsible for part of the methane bubble over the Four Corners area. The firm is deflecting charges of intentionally delaying the hookup of a solar generating station for a Minnesota company.
The connection will allow Louis Industries to feed electricity back to Xcel, such as when the factory isn’t running on weekends and holidays. Solar advocates have long accused the utility industry of resisting customer-generated solar power with fees, restrictive policies and delays. But Xcel insists that’s not what has happened with the solar array in Paynesville, a community 85 miles northwest of the Twin Cities. [Star-Tribune]
Sioux Falls-based Xcel Energy just enjoyed a 4 percent rate hike from the South Dakota Public Utility Cartel (SDPUC) but reduced its request in Colorado.
The latest Xcel Energy data show cannabis grow facilities statewide, the bulk in Denver, used as much as 200 million kilowatt hours of electricity in 2014, utility officials said. City officials said 354 grow facilities in Denver used about 121 million kwh in 2013, up from 86 million kwh at 351 facilities in 2012. Lighting companies are working with pot companies to test the potential for LED lamps to reduce electricity use without hurting plants, Xcel spokesman Mark Stutz said. Xcel is advising companies on how much electricity different lights use, he said. [The Cannabist]
In 2014, Xcel gave $10,000 to Mike Rounds, $2,500 to John Thune and $4,250 to Kristi Noem.

Why are Xcel and other utilities based in South Dakota? No taxes, a compliant regulator and cheap labor.

Now we know why South Dakota's GOP congressional delegation wants cheap dirty coal.

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