Garfield County commissioners pen support for northwest Colorado gas plant |

Garfield County commissioners pen support for northwest Colorado gas plant

Garfield County has formalized its support for a gas-fired power plant to be located on the Western Slope. The three county commissioners signed a letter Tuesday to the chair of Colorado Public Utilities Commission requesting a plant in northwest Colorado as part of a statewide energy plan.

“Siting new natural gas electricity generation on the west slope would help create economic equity in a state where only the I-25 corridor celebrates economic prosperity,” the letter reads.

Xcel plans to shut down two coal-fired power generators in Pueblo, it announced in August, which it plans to replace with wind, solar and natural gas plants, which produce lower carbon dioxide emissions.

Xcel’s proposal is still before the Colorado PUC, which will have to approve it before a location for the plant can be found.

“We’re in support of a natural gas electric plant in Western Colorado, and that makes a lot of sense because that’s where natural gas is produced,” Jankovsky explained at Tuesday’s hearing.

“We believe building new capacity in Western Colorado provides important economic mitigation against previous regulatory decisions around electric generation that have economically harmed our portion of the state,” the letter adds.

The Garfield County commissioners are among many elected officials across the state trying to convince Xcel and state officials to bring a natural gas plant to their county.

“I’d like to see it in western Colorado,” commissioner Mike Samson added. “I know Idaho and Utah and Montana want it, and that’s fine, but we’d love it in western Colorado.”

All three commissioners signed the letter on Tuesday.

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