A coalition of environmental, renewable energy and labor groups as well as state agencies reached a deal with one of Colorado’s largest greenhouse gas emitters. The settlement commits Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association to boosting investments in energy efficiency, reducing coal operations, and modeling the early retirement of the third and final generator at a large Colorado coal plant. Under the deal, which must be approved by the State Public Utilities Commission, Tri-State has committed to annual energy efficiency savings of 1 percent of its system load by 2030. It also includes interim CO2 targets, requiring emissions to be cut 26% of 2005 levels by 2024, rising to 80% by 2030.
Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell attorneys Sarah Keane and Sarah Judkins represented the Natural Resources Defense Council in the deal. “Colorado has been very dependent on coal plants, and those coal plants are really no longer cost effective and there is an amazing opportunity to move toward renewable energy to power Colorado’s economy,” said Noah Long, who leads the Western climate and energy program at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “This settlement shows willingness from Tri-State to make big strides in that direction.”