Aspen wants all renewable power

ASPEN, COLORADO - Customers of Aspen Electric, the municipal utility that supplies about two-thirds of the city, will see a rate increase of about 20 percent.

City officials describe it as a way to leverage the cityÂ’s electrical supply to 100 percent renewable sources.

Currently, Aspen Electric operates on about 75 percent renewable sources.

However, the increased costs will not be fully shared. The new rates will be incremental, so that consumers who use more kilowatt hours monthly will pay more.

A consultant, Todd Cristiano, told the Aspen City Council that itÂ’s possible some customers will see a decrease in their rates.

Aspen already buys a great deal of wind-generated electricity from outside sources, and in the 1990s invested in retrofit of a nearby dam, at Ruedi Reservoir, to give it hydroelectric capacity.

It is also refurbishing hydroelectric plants on two local creeks to deliver electricity. Other sources of heat and energy, including ground-source heat pumps and geothermal energy, are also being explored.


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