October 2011 - The Colorado Springs, Colorado City Council approved a solar program that allows customers to invest in a community solar garden that will be located at Venetucci Farm. Purchasing shares of the solar garden allows customers to utilize solar power without having to install panels on their own homes. SunShare will begin installing the solar garden on November 7th, with a 300 kilowatt (kW) first phase installation to be completed by December 15th, and a second phase 275 kW installation to be completed by December 31st.
Almost 110 customers have already signed up for the solar garden program, and it is estimated that between 300 and 600 customers will be enrolled once all solar shares are sold. Solar shares cost $2.39 per watt, and may be leased for 20 years at $550 per solar panel, with a minimum two panel lease. Solar garden customers will receive a credit of 9 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) on their bill for their share of the power generated at the community solar garden. Colorado Springs Utilities will also provide subscribers with a one-time $2 per watt incentive, up to 30 percent of their solar garden investment.
Contact - David Amster-Olszewski, 800-793-0786
November 2010 - The U.S. Air Force Academy has broken ground on a 6-megawatt solar system. The installation of more than 19,000 solar panels is expected to be completed by April 2011. The system will provide up to 15 percent of the Air Force Academy's energy needs.
The project will be designed, built, and operated by SunPower Corp. The power will be sold to Colorado Springs Utilities, which will then deliver it to the Air Force Academy, under a 25-year agreement.
News Release - AFA breaks ground on 6-megawatt solar array
News Article - Academy launches one of largest solar projects in state
June 2008 - Colorado Springs Utilities (CSU) is now offering its customers renewable energy certificates (RECs) in 100 kWh increments at a price of 34¢ each, or 0.34¢/kWh. When a customer signs up under the program, CSU retires the requisite quantity of RECs on their behalf. The REC program comes in response to strong customer demand for renewable energy; CSU's green pricing program is currently sold out.
The program is being supplied by a five-year REC contract between the Western Area Power Administration (WAPA), on behalf of CSU and other utilities, and Community Energy, Inc. The RECs are derived from national sources of wind and geothermal energy.
CSU Contact: Mark James, (719) 668-8017
September 2006 - The Western Area Power Administration announced that it coordinated renewable energy certificate (REC) purchases by five federal agencies totaling 236 million kWh over five years. The RECs will be supplied by 3 Phases Energy (now serviced by 3Degrees) from wind, biomass and geothermal projects located in California, Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, Oregon and South Dakota. The purchases will help the agencies meet federal renewable energy use goals set in the Energy Policy Act of 2005. The agency purchases include:
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Denver (7 million kWh)
- Fort Lewis, Wash. (209.5 million kWh)
- NASA Ames Research Center, Calif. (12.3 million kWh)
- NASA Eastside Airfield, Calif. (4.1 million kWh)
- U.S. Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Region (2.75 million kWh)
Western also coordinated a 1.5 billion kWh, five-year purchase of renewable energy by Colorado Springs Utilities, which will be used to comply with the state's renewable portfolio standard (RPS) requirement. Under this agreement, Community Energy, Inc. will supply RECs from wind energy and other renewable projects located primarily in California, Kansas and Nebraska.
News Article - Credits Help Utilities Go Green
November 1997 - Colorado Springs Utilities has signed a contract with Public Service Company of Colorado (PSCo) for the purchase of 500 kW of wind power through PSCo's WindSource program. The utility has started marketing the Green Power program and is actively seeking residential and commercial customer subscribers. The utility, which will charge a premium of $3.00 per 100-kWh block for the wind energy, hopes to begin supplying windpower to participating customers in April.
April 1997 - Colorado Springs Utilities has expressed interest in purchasing wind power from Public Service of Colorado (PSCo). Surveys indicate that some customers want the utility to pursue clean energy for environmental reasons and to gain experience with new technologies. In March 1997, the Colorado Springs city council gave the utility permission to pursue a wind power plan. The utility will now evaluate the marketplace to determine if there is sufficient customer demand for power, and if so, to negotiate with PSCo to purchase wind power from PSCo's planned wind farm in northeastern Colorado. A decision will then be made as to whether to go ahead with the program.
Colorado Springs Utilities Contact: Jay Francis (719) 448-8634