Xcel Energy and New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announced an agreement that resolves greenhouse gas disclosure issues raised by Cuomo last fall."Xcel Energy voluntarily has reduced its carbon emissions by large amounts in recent years and plans to continue making significant reductions in CO2 emissions in the future," said Dick Kelly, chairman, president and CEO.
"We previously provided detailed information concerning the expected impact of climate change and greenhouse gas emissions regulations on our operations, and under this agreement we will make even more detailed disclosures. This agreement will enhance our already aggressive efforts to be responsible environmental stewards."
In a Sept. 14 subpoena, Cuomo sought information about Xcel Energy's public disclosures in filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission regarding the expected impact of climate change and the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions on the company's operations, financial condition and plans to construct a new coal-fired electricity generating unit at the Comanche station in Pueblo, Colo.
In response, Xcel Energy provided documents including its 2006 response to a questionnaire from the Carbon Disclosure Project, an independent not-for-profit organization that solicits information and makes corporate responses publicly available; its Triple Bottom Line report, which describes the company's social, environmental and economic impacts, and information filed with the Colorado Public Utilities Commission about the Comanche plant addition.
"Xcel Energy represents that it has voluntarily reduced its GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions by a cumulative total of over 18 million tons since 2003," the agreement states.
"Xcel Energy is the largest utility provider of wind energy in the United States, according to the American Wind Energy Association. The Company also has announced plans to expand its renewable energy portfolio by at least 6,000 MW (megawatts) of additional renewable electric generating capacity by 2020."
Without admitting or denying any violation of law or wrongdoing, Xcel Energy agreed to resolve the attorney general's investigation voluntarily by agreeing to expand and/or continue to provide a discussion of climate change and possible attendant risks in its 10-K filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The disclosures are to include analyses of financial risks from current and probable future laws, from litigation and from physical impacts of climate change, and strategic analysis of climate change risk and emissions management.