Hickenlooper’s Recent Controversy

Colorado ranks eighth in the nation for the amount of solar power systems installed, and fifth in the amount of energy being produced by those solar power systems.

We expect about 4,400 megawatts of solar power to be installed in Colorado in 2013, with the anticipation of growing to 9,200 megawatts by 2016.

Part of the above increase will stem from controversial bill recently signed by Gov. John Hickenlooper. The governor had received lots of pressure to veto the bill, but he stated, “[v]etoing this bill and waiting until the 2014 legislative session for a more perfect version would set Colorado back one year in our pursuit of a more diverse energy portfolio. We cannot afford to lose this valuable time, especially with the expiration of the Federal Production Tax Credit on wind generation at the end of this year…We know that utilities across the country have actually saved money by incorporating more renewable energy generation. Wind, for example, can cost as little as 2.75 cents per kilowatt hour, which is lower than the average cost of new natural gas generation.”

Some see the new law negatively because it was rushed with no offers of compromise, while others see it as a signal that Colorado leads the energy industry.

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